Tom Heaton called up by Gareth Southgate as training goalkeeper

Tom Heaton called up by Gareth Southgate as training goalkeeper
Tom Heaton called up by Gareth Southgate as training goalkeeper

Considering the poor season plenty of Manchester United stars endured, it was not surprising to see a few players not make the cut for their national team.

Marcus Rashford was one of the high-profile omissions and Harry Maguire joined him after failing to recover from his injury in time.

Luke Shaw and Kobbie Mainoo remain the only two United players in the Three Lions’ Euro 2024 squad with the full-back still on an individual training program as he looks to be fit in time for the tournament.

Now, the English FA have officially announced that United reserve keeper Tom Heaton will be travelling to Germany as training keeper for the duration of the competition.

Heaton surprise call-up

He will help train and support the trio of Jordan Pickford, Aaron Ramsdale and former United academy graduate Dean Henderson.

Having represented the country before and with the experienced of playing under pressure both for his country and club, England manager Gareth Southgate felt the 38-year-old was the perfect pick.

“I am really pleased Tom has agreed to join us in Germany. Experience tells us that a tournament can put a lot of demand on our goalkeeping group led by Martyn Margetson. Tom will play an invaluable role on the training pitch supporting Jordan, Aaron and Dean,” Southgate said.

“Off the field as someone we all know well, he will add to the positive environment we are always looking to create. We are grateful to Manchester United for their support in making this happen.”

Heaton took to social media to share his joy at this surprising opportunity that came his way at the very last moment.

His reaction

“Incredibly honoured to be asked by Gareth to join the squad. To get the call to go to a major tournament, to help in anyway I can and pass on my experience is a proud moment

“We have a great squad, I’m excited and can’t wait to join the group,” he wrote on X (formerly Twitter).

Heaton did not play a single game last season under Erik ten Hag and his contract with the club ends in June. Reports indicate a extension will not be forthcoming.

However, there are plans on inducting him into the coaching group while the shot-stopper would prefer to keep playing for now.

The former Aston Villa man won three senior caps for England and was part of the squad at both Euro 2016 and the 2019 Nations League Finals.

Want to be the first to hear breaking Man United news? For carefully selected, crucial updates, join our WhatsApp channel: