England’s 26-strong World Cup squad has been announced today as Gareth Southgate revealed who made the cut. So far, a number of teams have announced their squads, including Brazil, Germany and France.
With their Group B opener coming just 11 days after the squad is named, at a tournament that has been unceremoniously wedged into the middle of the season, the England manager has sprung a few surprises.
Full England squad
Goalkeepers: Jordan Pickford ( Everton ), Nick Pope (Newcastle), Aaron Ramsdale ( Arsenal)
Defenders: Harry Maguire (Man Utd), John Stones (Man City), Kyle Walker (Man City), Luke Shaw (Man Utd), Kieran Trippier (Newcastle), Trent Alexander-Arnold ( Liverpool) , Eric Dier ( Tottenham ), Conor Coady (Everton), Ben White (Arsenal)
Midfielders: Declan Rice (West Ham ), Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), Mason Mount ( Chelsea ), Kalvin Phillips (Man City), James Maddison ( Leicester ), Conor Gallagher (Chelsea)
Attackers: Harry Kane (Tottenham), Phil Foden (Man City), Raheem Sterling (Chelsea), Marcus Rashford (Man Utd), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Jack Grealish (Man City), Callum Wilson (Newcastle)
Marcus Rashford has not kicked a ball for England since missing his spot-kick at the Euro 2020 final but a recent resurgence in form under Erik ten Hag has seen him force his way back in.
James Maddison’s fine form at Leicester has led to clamour for the attacking midfielder to be selected, while striker Callum Wilson has caught the eye at Newcastle and each of them have done enough to earn a place.
Elsewhere, a few have already been told that they have not made the cut including Fikayo Tomori, James Ward-Prowse and Ivan Toney, among others.
Chelsea defender Reece James is arguably England’s best right-back but the 22-year-old will not be travelling to Qatar due to a knee injury sustained last month.
Gareth Southgate admitted it could be viewed as “arrogant” to take a player to the World Cup who will not be available for the group stage.
“There were too many unknowns,” Southgate said of leaving James out. “I don’t think we can take a player who’s not available for the group. That would be deemed arrogant in some circles and you’d be dropping him into a quarter-final.”
Gareth Southgate explained that he is taking his “experienced defenders” to Qatar, while he also reserved high praise for Harry Maguire.
The Manchester United captain has come under intense scrutiny this season but the Three Lions boss declared he “is one of our best centre-backs”.