Carroll mystery after U21 delay

Stuart Pearce has already informed at least two players of their

fate, with Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger confirming Jack Wilshere’s

selection and Scott Loach revealing on Wednesday night he had not

made the cut. It is fair to assume the vast majority of the 40-man

provisional party named by Pearce earlier this month have also been

made aware of whether they have made the final 23, and full details

of the squad were expected to be released on Thursday afternoon.

But the Football Association have revealed it will now be announced

on Monday, the same day as the senior squad for the June 4 European

Championship qualifier against Switzerland. The FA claimed the

decision to delay was made because it was felt better to wait until

after Sunday’s final round of Premier League games before going

public. But Thursday’s news will only serve to fuel speculation

over the inclusion of Liverpool striker Carroll, following reports

he had expressed concern about taking part in the finals in

Denmark. The 22-year-old, who has endured an injury-hit second half

of the season, is said to have questioned whether tournament

football could do him more harm than good ahead of the new

campaign. Like Wenger, Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish has suggested

he is not in favour of players being drafted back into the Under-21

fold after graduating to the senior set-up. Wenger has also

expressed concern about 19-year-old Wilshere suffering burnout as

result of the number of games he has played for club and country

this season. Wenger said on Thursday: “I heard he has been picked.

We just have to accept and respect the choice, even if we think it

is the wrong decision. “Jack Wilshere is in the red for a while now

and this can be a risk for his health. “He will respect the

decision. He knows that he is nearly at the end of his energy level

but he is keen to do well. “He has played nearly 50 games this

year. To go to a tournament for me is a massive risk. “I am happy

if the under-21s do well because I want England to do very well. “I

think it is not the right decision but will respect (it) and let

him go.” Pearce has been adamant that including the best players at

his disposal is crucial not only to England’s chances this summer

but also to boosting the country’s hopes of success at future World

Cups and European Championships. One player who has confirmed he

did not make the final 23 is Watford goalkeeper Loach. His omission

may spark speculation Fabio Capello is preparing to make him a

permanent part of the senior set-up following Ben Foster’s decision

to make himself unavailable for selection. Loach, who was twice

promoted last year following a series of withdrawals, wrote on

Twitter on Wednesday: “Didn’t make final 23..so no more 21s for me.

“Just an honour to have gained 14 caps for my country. Time to

relax n have a few weeks off now.” Both Wilshere and Carroll are

expected to be named in the senior squad against Switzerland at

Wembley, meaning they would miss the Under-21s’ pre-tournament

training camp. England’s Under-21 Championship campaign begins on

June 12 and they will play three games in eight days, and five in

15 days if they reach the final.