Luke Shaw is 'just pipping' Ben Chilwell for an England starting spot at Euro 2020, says Ashley Cole

Ashley Cole admits Luke Shaw is ahead of Ben Chilwell in the race to become England's first-choice left-back at this summer's European Championships.

Manchester United defender Shaw made his first England appearance since 2018 on Sunday during the Three Lions' 2-0 victory in Albania, playing the full 90 minutes and setting up Harry Kane's opener in the World Cup qualifying win.

Chelsea man Chilwell was England's stand-out option at left-back for several months before Shaw's recent resurgence but Cole claimed the United man will keep his spot if he remains consistent until the rest of the season.

The former England left-back, who received 107 caps as an England player himself, told ITV Sport on Sunday: 'Shaw’s just pipping Chilwell.

'At the moment, Shaw’s in the lead, but going into the last few games of the Premier League, it’s a question of keeping consistency.'

In his first England game back since a friendly defeat to Spain in the autumn of 2018, Shaw put in a brilliant delivery for Three Lions skipper Kane to head home on 38 minutes.

Mason Mount would go on to seal the points with a second-half strike but England have registered their third consecutive clean sheet under Southgate and their eighth shutout in 11 international matches.

United left-back Shaw earned his spot following a brilliant couple of months at club level. The 25-year-old has registered one Premier League goal and laid on four assists since the start of February in his best run of games at Old Trafford to date.

Shaw is now in a direct left-back competition with Chilwell, who started Thursday's 5-0 win over San Marino at Wembley, though Arsenal's Bukayo Saka could also be a rival should Southgate opt to use wing-backs this calendar year.

The defender has been in the England set-up since he was 18-year-old and now has nine international caps to his name, but the left-back has now admitted he did not take the Three Lions chances presented to him in the past.

The 25-year-old told ITV after the Albania win on Sunday: 'I am very happy to win on my first game back.

'Gareth (Southgate) said it before that we are really on to clean sheets at the moment and we got one. Three points and job done. I am happy to be back in the fold.

'The last two years I have been watching the games and regretted not being able to take my chances when I had them and I'm so happy to be back. Even if I'm not playing and am just around the squad it's still brilliant.

'Of course I would love to be in the Euros squad, every English player would love to. There is high competition. Chilly (Chilwell) played the other night and was outstanding. Competition is great and I will keep pushing myself.'

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