Trent Alexander-Arnold is determined to become a regular starter for England and believes that an outstanding performance during this international camp will increase his chances of getting an important role at next summer’s European Championship.
Alexander-Arnold, who is in the starting lineup for Friday night’s Euro 2024 qualifier against Malta, feels his international career is finally about to take off.
The Liverpool right-back missed Euro 2020 through injury, had a bit-part role at last year’s World Cup and is yet to establish himself in Gareth Southgate’s XI, but he has started to shine for his country since being handed a midfield role last summer.
The 25-year-old’s creative talents have come to the fore and, while two of the spots in England’s midfield will inevitably go to Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham, the third remains up for grabs.
It means Alexander-Arnold will be full of motivation when Southgate’s side, who are looking to clinch top spot in Group C having already sealed their Euros place, host Malta at Wembley before visiting North Macedonia on Monday. He is setting his sights higher than merely earning a place in the squad.
“I see an opportunity to play in the Euros and it’s an opportunity I want to take,” Alexander-Arnold said. “Every game between now and the end of the season, it’s to earn a place to start in the Euros.
“These are huge opportunities. That is where my head is at when I’m turning up to camp. It is full focus. I want to start those games at the Euros and be someone who can help win silverware for the country.”
Alexander-Arnold, who wants to become part of the squad’s leadership group, regards starring in midfield against Malta last June as a turning point.
“The Malta game was my best performance in an England shirt,” he said.
“Going into it that I had confidence.
“I had spoken to the manager leading up to that camp and he explained there could be a potential opportunity in midfield. When I heard those words, it ignited something within me. There was a chance to go out there and take it. I think that’s what I did.”
Alexander-Arnold plays as a hybrid midfielder for Liverpool. Southgate used him as an inverted right-back against Australia last month.
“I suppose I’ve never really played a traditional full-back role ever but as close to a Trent version of a full-back as you can get,” Alexander-Arnold said.