Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope has been ruled out of this summer’s European Championships with a knee injury.
The 29-year-old had been attempting to manage the issue in recent weeks, missing two matches in April before sitting out Burnley’s last two games, but it had been hoped that he would be healthy enough to complete the season.
Unfortunately, according to the Daily Mail, late scans on Pope’s knee showed the damage is worse than initially feared and he will be required to undergo surgery which will rule him out of the Euros.
The injury is not thought to be too serious and Pope is only expected to spend a month on the sidelines, but the timing could hardly be worse for the goalkeeper.
England boss Gareth Southgate is set to name his squad on May 25 but will now not be able to call on Pope, who many fans wanted to see named as England’s starter for the Euros ahead of Everton‘s Jordan Pickford.
Instead, Pickford will remain the undisputed starter, and he will likely be backed up by Manchester United‘s Dean Henderson and West Bromwich Albion’s Sam Johnstone, both of whom were part of the England setup during the last international break when the Everton man was out injured.
Pope’s issue is one of several injury problems which Southgate is facing. Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson is expected to win his race against time to earn a spot in the squad, but the jury is still out on whether West Ham’s Declan Rice or Man Utd’s Harry Maguire will recover in time from their own respective issues.
Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold is a likely casualty, with Southgate likely to turn to Chelsea’s Reece James to deputise for Manchester City’s Kyle Walker and Atletico Madrid’s Kieran Trippier.
England will get their European journey underway against Croatia at Wembley Stadium on June 13, before rounding out the group stage against Scotland and the Czech Republic.