Newcastle United's Kieran Trippier on standby amid injury concerns

Kieran Trippier’s England’s only fit and available right-back – after Reece James suffered an injury.

James, pencilled in to start for his country at the World Cup in Qatar next month, was forced off in Chelsea’s 2-0 Champions League win over AC Milan last night with a knee problem.

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James tweeted: "Fingers crossed it’s not a bad one. Love for all the messages, I appreciate you all."

Chelsea head coach Graham Potter said: “We're hoping he'll be OK. We'll need 24 to 48 hours. We'll know more after that.”

Gareth Southgate had seemingly had an abundance of right-back options ahead of the World Cup, but Manchester City’s Kyle Walker recently had groin surgery – and is battling to be fit for the tournament, and Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold, behind Trippier in the pecking order, was forced off against Arsenal on Sunday with an ankle problem.

And that leaves 32-year-old Trippier – who has been captaining Newcastle this season – as Southgate’s only available option as it stands, though the tournament doesn’t kick off until November 20.

Eddie Howe addressed Trippier’s fitness after the weekend’s 5-1 win over Brentford at St James’s Park after taking him off late in the game.

Newcastle United defender Kieran Trippier.

“He just had a bit of fatigue, I think," said United’s head coach. “He’s come back from England duty, where he didn’t play, and that two weeks can sometimes just knock a player’s normal routine and schedule.

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"Touch wood, there’s no injury with him, but we’re just trying to look after him really – and get him through these games.”