Kobbie Mainoo of England during the international friendly match between England and Brazil at Wembley Stadium on March 23, 2024 in London, England.

England and Man Utd midfielder Kobbie Mainoo.

England boss Gareth Southgate is set to pick an unfamiliar lineup for Tuesday’s friendly with Belgium as injuries have hit the squad hard this week. 

Harry Kane has returned to Germany after failing to recover from his ankle injury in time, while Kyle Walker has been ruled out after being forced off in the first half of Saturday’s defeat to Brazil.

Bukayo Saka had to leave the camp with a muscular problem, while Reece James, Luke Shaw, Levi Colwill, Tyrone Mings, Ben White and Kieran ­Trippier were unavailable for selection.

James Trafford has been called up after Sam Johnstone pulled out of the squad with an injury. Cole Palmer and Jordan Henderson are doubts heading into the Belgium game.

Southgate will be forced into picking a makeshift backline, with Lewis Dunk likely to partner Harry Maguire in the centre of defence.

The 53-year-old will need to explore his options in the full-back options after pouring doubt on Shaw’s ability to be fit for Euro 2024. Chelsea’s Ben Chilwell is expected to start on the right, while Aston Villa centre-back Ezri Konsa will start on the opposite side.

Kobbie Mainoo is expected to be handed his first senior start for England after coming off the bench for his debut at the weekend. The Manchester United midfielder will feature alongside Declan Rice, who will captain the team on his 50th cap.

Jude Bellingham will retain his spot as the number 10, while Jarrod Bowen could replace Phil Foden on the right while Marcus Rashford will start on the left in place of Anthony Gordon.

Up front Southgate is likely going to hand another full debut, with Ivan Toney set to start ahead of Ollie Watkins. It will be the Brentford striker’s last chance to prove he should be the Three Lions’ primary understudy to Kane ahead of the Euros.

4-2-3-1: Pickford; Konsa, Dunk, Maguire, Chilwell; Mainoo, Rice; Bowen, Bellingham, Rashford; Toney.

Read – Rice set for talks with Arsenal star over England return

See Also – The youngest England debutants this century

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