England boss Gareth Southgate is poised to leave some big names out of his World Cup squad, which will be named by October 19. Express Sport takes you through four of the most eye-catching potential absentees with a selection of Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool stars at risk of missing the cut…
When Sancho hit double figures in goals and assists for two seasons in a row as a Borussia Dortmund teenager, it was virtually unthinkable that he would be out of the England fold in 2022. His output slowed after joining Manchester United last summer, however, and his Three Lions standing has consequently taken a hit.
Eyebrows were raised when the likes of Jack Grealish and Jarrod Bowen were chosen ahead of Sancho in the latest England squad. With no chances remaining to state his case on the international stage, the 22-year-old must have a sensational few weeks with the Red Devils to change Southgate’s mind.
Another player thought to be destined for a long and fruitful career at international level, Alexander-Arnold’s World Cup spot could fall victim to a poor spell of form for Liverpool and a wealth of other capable options to call on at right-back.
The 23-year-old has virtually unmatched crossing ability and is no stranger to the Three Lions’ set-up, having made 17 caps so far. But Southgate appears to favour the likes of Reece James, Kieran Trippier and Kyle Walker who, as a trio, could provide enough cover for one position in Qatar.
The Arsenal star’s omission from the latest England squad came as something of a surprise, given that the Three Lions are hardly brimming with top-quality centre-backs. White has four caps to his name and the versatility to play in the middle of defence, on the right-hand side or in a defensive midfield role, making Southgate’s snub even more of a head-scratcher.
The latest selection includes Harry Maguire, who has been dropped by Manchester United, and John Stones, who is struggling for regular game time at Manchester City. Southgate has built a reputation as a manager who likes to stick with his tried and trusted players, which could cost White his chance to feature at the World Cup.
With Jordan Pickford the traditional No 1 and Nick Pope likely to serve as back-up, there is only one spot remaining between Aaron Ramsdale and Henderson. Both goalkeepers made the squad this time around in Pickford’s absence but, when he returns for the tournament proper, one will presumably have to drop out.
Manchester United loanee Henderson may be the unlucky party given that Ramsdale is flying at the top of the Premier League table with Arsenal. In stark contrast, the once-capped 25-year-old has conceded 17 goals in seven matches on loan at Nottingham Forest, who sit 19th in the table.