Raheem Sterling has quit England’s World Cup squad after armed intruders broke into his London home.
The Chelsea striker was left out of the Three Lions squad for Sunday’s round of 16 clash with Senegal, which England won 3-0.
Sterling left England’s World Cup squad on Sunday
England reveal Sterling is dealing with ‘a family matter’
It has since emerged that Sterling’s home in Surrey, near Chelsea’s training ground, was targeted in a burglary on Saturday night.
His family was inside at the time and he is worried about his children’s well-being, so arrangements were made for him to fly home from Qatar on Sunday.
Boss Gareth Southgate held talks with Sterling before he left the field and has told the Chelsea star that he is welcome to join the squad but will not pressure him to do so.
“I spent a lot of time with him this morning trying to find the best way to go about everything,” the England manager told talkSPORT after the win against Senegal, which booked a quarter-final with France for next saturday
“He’s going home tonight. The priority at the moment is his family and we have to give him the space to sort everything out and then we’ll see if and when he can come back.
“That wouldn’t be a problem in terms of the bubble, but obviously we have to give it space and time to figure out exactly what’s going to happen.”
Sterling moved to London in the summer, leaving Man City for Chelsea
The 27-year-old has been a key player for Southgate and has scored 20 goals in 81 games for England.
He was named in the starting eleven for the Three Lions’ first group stage match against Iran, scoring in a 6–2 win.
He also started the 0-0 draw with the USA, but was replaced by Jack Grealish in the 68th minute of the match.
Sterling then sat out the 3-0 win over Wales and was unable to come off the bench in their Group B final.
England’s Twitter account posted ahead of the match against Senegal: “Raheem Sterling is unavailable for selection for the #ThreeLions tonight as he is dealing with a family matter.”
England manager Southgate made one change against Senegal from the team that beat Wales, with Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka returning for Marcus Rashford.
Phil Foden kept his place and Southgate’s selection decisions paid off.
Saka scored, while Foden created two in a comfortable 3-0 win that sets up a delicious last 16 clash against France for England.
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