England U21 coach Pearce: Walcott can handle being dropped

Stuart Pearce has no doubts Theo Walcott could handle being dropped for England's European Championship clash with Spain on Thursday.

Stuart Pearce has no doubts Theo Walcott could handle being dropped for England's European Championship clash with Spain on Thursday.

The Arsenal attacker was subbed at half-time in the opening Group B 2-1 win against Finland.

Pearce said: "It's impossible to lose Theo, he's such a good man. The feeling I have is that every player puts the squad ahead of themselves.

"It's been spelt out to them that this is about the collective getting over the finishing line, not the individual.

"If certain players are rested through injury or tactically, the whole is always greater than the individual.

"I treat all 23 exactly the same. They are in or out on merit and over the course of five matches I'll have to use every single player if we are fortunate enough to play five.

"If it is only three matches I know I'll use 16 or 17 at least. Everyone has to contribute and has to be mentally ready."

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