16th of May 2018 Author: Johnny Karp
England manager Gareth Southgate has surprised a few people when he named 19-year-old Liverpool full-back Trent Alexander-Arnold in his squad for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, and the absence of Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere is another interesting call. Trent Alexander-Arnold has never been capped for England, but manager Gareth Southgate defended his choice: "The first call-up for Trent Alexander-Arnold is well deserved. When we pick young players, it's not just because they are young, it's because their performances deserve it." West Ham goalie Joe Hart didn't do enough to convince Southgate, while left-back Ryan Bertrand was also left out.
Manager Gareth Southgate also had to name a list of five players that are on stand-by and could replace one of the 23 men in the squad in case of injury. Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana is then biggest name on that list, the others are Burnley goalkeeper Tom Heaton, Clarets defender James Tarkowski, Bournemouth's midfielder Lewis Cook and veteran Jake Livermore of West Brom. Jack Butland (Stoke), Jordan Pickford (Everton) and Nick Pope (Burnley) are the three goalkeepers that were called up by Gareth Southgate.
"I believe this is a squad we can be excited about," Southgate said after presenting his selection to the press. "It is a young group but with some really important senior players, so I feel the balance of the squad is good, both in terms of its experience, its character and also the positional balance." The England squad has an average age of 26 years and 18 days, and Chelsea's Gary Cahill is the only player in the squad with more than 40 caps. The line up of defenders includes, alongside Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Fabian Delph (Manchester City), Phil Jones (Manchester United), Harry Maguire (Leicester), Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur), John Stones (Manchester City), Kieran Trippier (Tottenham Hotspur), Kyle Walker (Manchester City) and Ashley Young (Manchester United).
The midfielders that were included in the squad are: Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur), Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), Jesse Lingard (Manchester United) and Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Chelsea), while the strikers are led by Tottenham's Harry Kane, alongside Marcus Rashford (Manchester United), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Jamie Vardy (Leicester) and Danny Welbeck (Arsenal).
England are 18/1 at Bet365 to win the 2018 World Cup.
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One thing comes in my mind when I'm looking that England squad and it's the lack of experience, yeah some of those players were at the EURO 16' but I still think they're not experienced enough with an exception of couple of players in defence.
It's strange to me that players like Lallana and Wilshere are not in the England squad because they're both a finest technicians in midfield but obviously Southgate prefer the youngest pacey players.
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