Southgate says Foden, Greenwood must regain his trust

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - UEFA Nations League - League A - Group 2 - Denmark v England - Telia Parken, Copenhagen, Denmark - September 8, 2020 England manager Gareth Southgate before the match REUTERS/John Sibley

(Reuters) - England manager Gareth Southgate said Phil Foden and Mason Greenwood will have to regain his trust before they can be considered for selection again after the pair were sent home for breaching COVID-19 protocols in Iceland.

Video footage earlier this week showed Manchester United forward Greenwood and Manchester City midfielder Foden allegedly inviting women to their hotel rooms after England’s 1-0 victory against Iceland in Reykjavik.

The duo were subsequently removed from Southgate’s squad and missed the goalless draw against Denmark on Tuesday.

“Trust needs to be rebuilt and that takes time,” Southgate told British media.

“There has to be a consequence to what happened and then we’ve got to try to help them rebuild. Young people err more often than older people do. But that doesn’t mean that you can hold that against them for ever.”

Southgate said the youngsters would have been punished for their actions even if there was no quarantine in place.

“I don’t really understand how players could have felt that was acceptable. That is a puzzle to me. We talked about a COVID breach. Initially that was what we needed to take control of. We had to act quickly,” he said.

“What’s emerged since means that whether there had been a COVID situation or not we’d have been sending the players home anyway. Everybody else needs to understand that’s not going to be tolerated within an England camp.”

Foden and Greenwood issued apologies in the aftermath of the incident, while the Football Association said they would be investigating the “unacceptable” breach of protocols.

Reporting by Arvind Sriram in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford