England World Cup squad: Who heads to Qatar and who misses out?

England World Cup squad: Who heads to Qatar and who misses out?
Southgate is set to have some key decisions to make for his World Cup squad
Southgate is set to have some key decisions to make for his World Cup squad
The time for experimenting is over and Gareth Southgate has a number of key decisions to make for his England side as the final international break ahead of the World Cup draws to a close.

The Three Lions held Germany to a 3-3 draw in their last Nations League fixture, bringing an end to a torrid campaign which has seen them relegated to League B. 

But Monday’s thriller at Wembley will have given Southgate plenty to think about in terms of choosing his 26-man squad heading out to the winter tournament in Qatar. 

With the November 13th squad submission deadline edging closer, Flashscore News looks at who is likely to make the grade and who is at risk of being left at home. 

On the plane to Qatar

Starting in goal and an easy pick is Jordan Pickford (28), who has been Southgate’s go-to man between the posts since the 2018 World Cup in Russia. 

The Everton stopper, currently injured, has been a reliable option for England for the most part and has snapped out of a wobbly stretch of form at club level. 

Backing up Pickford is expected to be Newcastle’s Nick Pope (30) and Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsdale (24), who have both fared well for their clubs so far this season. 

Moving into defence, there will be a handful of shoo-ins that Southgate is expected to call upon again.

The big story is about Harry Maguire (29), who despite his recent struggles for Manchester United, was still called up to the recent England fold. 

Southgate’s position on the centre-back is unlikely to be changed by Qatar and a similar view can be held regarding his United teammate Luke Shaw (27), who managed to impress against Germany. 

Reece James (22), Kyle Walker (32), Kieran Trippier (32), John Stones (28) and Ben Chilwell (25) also look to be guarantees while Eric Dier (28), fresh off a recall to the squad, may have also worked his way into Southgate’s thoughts. 

The options in midfield look to be relatively straight-forward for Southgate with Borussia Dortmund starlet Jude Bellingham (19) likely to be the first name on the list. 

West Ham’s Declan Rice (23) and Chelsea’s Mason Mount (23) also look set to be on board with Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson (32) too. 

Harry Kane will headline the forward group as he continues to chase down the all-time scoring record, while Raheem Sterling (27) will be hoping to build on his key displays at Euro 2020. 

Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka (21) has seemingly cemented his place in the set-up and will likely be in Qatar, as will Manchester City pair Jack Grealish (27) and Phil Foden (22). 

At risk of missing out

England’s choice of goalkeepers is relatively rigid and that won’t spell as great news for Dean Henderson (25), despite his good start to the campaign with loan side Nottingham Forest.

There was also a case for Sam Johnstone (29) to earn a place in the squad, but his lack of action at Crystal Palace since his transfer in the summer will likely force him out of contention. 

A defender that could fall on either side is Trent Alexander-Arnold (23), with his lack of action over the latest international period casting a big shadow on his potential World Cup involvement. 

There may also be a question mark over Fikayo Tomori (24), with the AC Milan defender not utilised massively by Southgate, with Conor Coady (29) and Marc Guehi (22) also vying for those positions. 

Kalvin Phillips’ (26) bid to make the tournament in Qatar is also at a major risk with the Man City midfielder struggling to record minutes with his new side, while also having to recover from shoulder surgery. 

Southampton captain James Ward-Prowse (27) is one on the fringes and may make the final cut due to his excellent set-piece ability, although there may not be enough room for Southgate to carry such a profile. 

Southgate may want to look elsewhere for that creativity, though, with Leicester man James Maddison (25) giving plenty of reasons as to why he should be involved. 

Moving into the forwards, recent call-up Ivan Toney (26) will be hoping to continue his strong Brentford form to keep him in the reckoning, while the same can be said for Manchester United duo Marcus Rashford (24) and Jadon Sancho (22). 

But West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen (25) may no longer be a guarantee to make the cut having struggled to hit similar heights he reached last term.