Chelsea right-back Reece James was sent off for England after the full-time whistle but Leeds United midfielder Kalvin Phillips – among other England stars – have defended James on Instagram following the 1-0 defeat to Denmark.
Phillips, 24, continued his meteoric rise for club and country by starting against Denmark in the UEFA Nations League clash on Wednesday night. But things quickly turned sour in his fourth cap, as Harry Maguire was sent off.
It put England on the back foot and they went behind to a Christian Eriksen penalty, a controversial decision which incensed the England players and even manager Gareth Southgate had to be calmed down at one point.
Following the full-time whistle and after a missed penalty claim, the England players reached boiling point. James made his point by going over to the referee, but amid his protests, the defender was shown a red card. He posted on Instagram.
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Tonight’s game was full of emotion, desire and hunger. Proud to have made my full senior debut in such a testing game. I take full responsibility for the Red card after the final whistle. Moments like this will make me stronger, I’ll continue to put in 100% day in day out to keep improving! Thank you for your continued support, I love you all!
It was a harsh red card but now, James will have to deal with the consequences and learn what it means to be an England player, and respecting an officials’ decision, no matter how bad. The England players have supported the defender, though.
Responding to James’ post, Phillips told the Chelsea ace to keep his ‘head up’. Chelsea teammate Tammy Abraham, West Ham United and ex-Chelsea man Declan Rice and Liverpool skipper Jordan Henderson also responded.