Danny Drinkwater's England future not certain after snub - Gareth Southgate
Gareth Southgate admits he is uncertain when Danny Drinkwater or Jack Wilshere might be seen in an England shirt again.
The Three Lions boss contacted Drinkwater with a view to including him in the squad to face Germany on Friday and Brazil four days later -- but the Chelsea midfielder declined the call-up because of fitness concerns.
He has made one start and three substitute appearances since joining from Leicester for £35 million, but last played 90 minutes in April and took a knock to the calf while playing against Manchester United last weekend.
Wilshere, meanwhile, has been overlooked for a heavily depleted squad due to a lack of game time at Arsenal and Southgate's view that he has not been used in his best position in recent seasons.
Southgate sees Wilshere as a deep-lying playmaker but Gunners boss Arsene Wenger and Bournemouth's Eddie Howe, who had the 25-year-old on loan last season, have used him in a more advanced role.
With just six friendlies before next summer's World Cup, time is running short for both men.
On Drinkwater, who won the last of three caps in May 2016, Southgate said: "I wanted to find out where he felt he was. He felt he wasn't ready yet to play this level.
"If Danny didn't feel he wasn't ready for that I can understand it given the amount of minutes he's had and didn't play at the end of the season with Leicester either."
Asked whether the chance would come again in the next international break, the manager added: "I've no idea. I would have thought so, but we might have other players back by then.
"I can't hypothesise over who I might be calling in March. I have no idea of how he feels or where he's at physically."
Wilshere might also be pondering where he stands by then. Southgate holds him in high esteem but his slide down the Arsenal pecking order and the difference of opinion over his deployment means he may need a new club, a new position or both in January.
"I don't think Jack is a No. 10,'' he stated. "I think he is a deeper player but he is not playing deeper. He didn't play deeper for Bournemouth, you'd have to ask Eddie why that was, and he is not playing deeper for Arsenal.
"You'd have to ask Arsene why he wasn't at Arsenal last year and you'd have to ask Eddie why he played him as a 10 last year.
"But I want to be clear, I really like Jack Wilshere as a player. I think he is a talent and I really respect him as an individual.
"I am hoping that we are in a position in March where we can pick him."