has admitted he snubbed Luke Shaw from his England squad for the UEFA Nations League
finals because of the form of rivals Ben Chilwell and Danny Rose.
The exclusion of Manchester United
's player of the year raised a few eyebrows when Southgate named his group for the tournament in Portugal next month.
Shaw has been one of United's standout players in what has been a disappointing season for the club but his performances were unable to win back his place in the national team.
When asked if it was a tough choice, Southgate said: 'No. Ben Chilwell and Danny Rose have been excellent for us so they are ahead in the pecking order. But it gives us a lot of good options.'
Shaw made 40 appearances in all competitions and won their player of the month prize on three occasions.
The headline news at the squad announcement was the shock inclusion of Southampton's Nathan Redmond.
Overlooked since winning his one and only England cap in March 2017, the 25-year-old scooped the player of the year double at Saints' end of year awards after a fine campaign.
England captain Harry Kane has been selected by Southgate despite an ankle ligament injury, while Harry Winks has also got the nod after groin surgery.
Speaking at a press conference, the England manager said: 'I think he finished the season really well. I think the new manager has had a positive effect: a lot of pace, playing the high press and has started to score more regularly.
'It is a really good opportunity for Nathan.'