England World Cup 2022 squad: Star players, shock omissions, surprise inclusions and more; complete list here
Gareth Southgate on Thursday announced England's 26-man squad for the Qatar World Cup 2022. Here's a look at which players made it for the showpiece event, the surprise inclusions, shocking omissions and more:
Gareth Southgate announced the 26-man England team for the upcoming Qatar World Cup 2022 on Thursday. The Three Lions, who advanced to the Euro 2020 final and the semi-finals in Russia four years ago, travel to the Gulf country hoping to build on their past tournament performances.
Following a scare with an injury, Kyle Walker of Manchester City is added to the roster, and Marcus Rashford of Manchester United returns to the lineup following a solid start to the season. Meanwhile, Arsenal defender Ben White found a place in the team after an impressive run with the current Premier League leaders.
The selections of Walker and Kalvin Phillips may be seen as a gamble, given how long the Manchester City pair have been out with injuries. Reece James and Ben Chilwell miss out through injury.
One of the unexpected participants in the tournament is James Maddison, who had a standout season for Leicester. Southgate’s selection of Maddison will be hugely popular among supporters and pundits who had urged the England manager to pick the 25-year-old.
Chelsea's Conor Gallagher's selection has also surprised many. However, fans believe he is a great inclusion in the England squad.
Brentford striker Ivan Toney, who has had an impressive run in the Premier League this campaign, has given way to Newcastle's Callum Wilson in the attack. This move has shocked several fans of the Three Lions, who believe Toney deserved a berth in the squad.
All eyes will be on their star player Harry Kane to see if the Tottenham Hotspur striker can lead the country to a historic win in Qatar.
The unlucky players to miss out are Fikayo Tomori, Marc Guehi, Ivan Toney, Tammy Abraham, Jarrod Bowen, James Ward-Prowse, Joe Gomez and Tyrone Mings.
"We've wanted to make sure the balance is right. We wanted different options for different moments. We had to cover for players. We are lighter in depth in some areas," said Southgate during his press conference.
On Monday, November 21, England plays its opening match against Iran.
Complete England squad for Qatar 2022: