With Euro 2020 now just months away, Southgate should be starting to think about who deserves a place in his 23 man squad.
From Goalkeepers to Forwards, I’m going to be looking at who are the guarantees along with the outsiders to get a place into the squad and eventually give my verdict on who should be getting the call up.
Everton keeper Jordan Pickford looks certain to make the squad, after making a good International impression at the 2018 World Cup. Despite looking shaky on a few occasions this season, I’m sure Southgate will stay loyal to the Evertonian. He is 1/50 to make the squad and 2/5 to start the first game, which is decently priced.
Dean Henderson has massively impressed this season and is a big factor in why Sheffield United are 7th in the league. He also should make the squad, yet isn’t worth backing at 1/8. He is 3/1 to start the first game at the Euros which is better, though with no previous International experience this looks unlikely.
The final Goalkeeper who should be making the squad is Burnley’s Nick Pope. He has been particularly impressive in recent weeks and is 1/12 to make the squad. Aaron Ramsdale is another option for Southgate, though the previous three are the most likely to get the call up.
Onto the defenders and the first who will be getting the call is Manchester United’s Harry Maguire. Being the world’s most expensive defender, along with having tournament experience, he is 1/50 to make the squad.
Liverpool’s Alexander-Arnold and Leicester’s Ben Chilwell are both 1/20 and are looking likely to not only get called up but start for the Three Lions.
Joe Gomez should be the most likely candidate to play alongside Maguire, having impressed alongside Ballon D’or runner up Van Dijk for Liverpool.
In terms of back up, this is the position which is probably the most in question, with the four already mentioned the only real certainties.
Having been very impressive in recent weeks, Luke Shaw is decently priced at 7/4, though holds competition from other left-backs such as Danny Rose and recently emerged youngsters Bukayo Saka and Brandon Williams. Though, Shaw should make the squad as the youngsters have such little experience.
Back up centre half’s are also debatable, as many seem very inconsistent for their clubs. John Stones, Fikayo Tomori, Chris Smalling, Tyrone Mings, Mason Holgate, Michael Keane, Lewis Dunk and Conor Coady will all be fighting for a place.
Despite seeming to be completely frozen out of Man City’s starting eleven, Stones is the most likely to get the call up. Though, I won’t be surprised if Southgate goes for Smalling, having impressed in Italy. He is certainly the more backable option at 5/2 compared to Stones at 1/4.
However, Lewis Dunk is very well priced at 20/1. Being Brighton’s captain, he is definitely one of the most consistent performers out of the players mentioned and has also played under Southgate previously for England. He’s very much loved by the Brighton fans and there is a reason as to why he is valued at £50 million and wanted by clubs such as Man City. He is certainly worth backing at such a high price and would make my England squad.
Conor Coady is also well priced, though, it seems as if Southgate isn’t too keen on the Wolves captain. Although, at 25/1 he may be worth a punt.
Without doubt the strongest position England has is at right back. With Trent Alexander-Arnold seeming to be a guarantee, Kyle Walker, Kieran Trippier, Wan Bissaka and Reece James will all be hoping to join him.
It’s a very hard one to call, but I believe Walker will join the Liverpudlian into the squad. Kieran Trippier hasn’t played since January, having recently had surgery and Wan Bissaka is lacking in international experience compared to Walker.
The only Midfielder who looks certain to make the squad is Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson. He has been immense for Liverpool this season and is even a strong contender to be PFA player of the year. He, like Maguire, is 1/50.
James Maddison is second favourite to make the squad at 1/10. This surprises me as his form of late hasn’t been as good and he only has one England appearance to his name.
His, in some way, ‘rival’ Jack Grealish is a much more backable option at 1/2 and should definitely find himself in Southgate’s squad following his tremendous season at Aston Villa. Despite seeming to play left wing for Villa, If we are choosing between the two in that attacking midfield slot, I would still go for Grealish.
Despite finding himself in a struggling West Ham side, Declan Rice has been the Hammers’ shining light and only consistent figure in a damp season and is likely to make the squad, alongside Oxlade-Chamberlain, Dele Alli and Harry Winks.
Despite seeming to be a certainty to make it in my opinion, Winks is generously priced at 4/5.
Even though he doesn’t deserve to be called up, Jesse Lingard isn’t badly priced at 16/1. Southgate did include Lingard in the 23 man World cup squad. However, the Man United midfielder hasn’t had a good season and wasn’t called up in Southgate’s most recent England squad, so this is unlikely.
Other names who will be fighting for the spot will be Ross Barkley, Mason Mount, Fabien Delph, Loftus Cheek and outsider Ward Prowse, none of whom are worth backing due to the low price and strong competition.
Raheem Sterling is favourite in the forwards department at 1/20, which is understandable. Jadon Sancho is set to join him at 1/16, with Harry Kane 1/4 to make the squad, due to lack of fitness.
However, Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has stated Kane is “ahead of schedule” and being the Nations captain and previous World Cup golden boot winner, even a half fit Kane will be making the squad.
Solskjaer has revealed it is “touch and go” as to whether Rashford will play again this season. Though, similarly to Kane, I believe Southgate will risk a non fully fit Rashford due to the quality he possesses so he could be worth backing at 4/6.
Danny Ings’ price has shot down in recent weeks, now being just Evens to make it. Despite having a remarkable season, the former Liverpool forward’s early goal scoring form has tailed off as of late and he doesn’t have the ‘big club bias’ on his side compared to the other forwards. Therefore, he may not find himself in the squad.
However, despite injuries being a burden to him in the past, he has played every league game for the Saints this season, which is an important factor considering England’s current forward injury crisis. He is also England’s second top scorer in the league this season, only behind Jamie Vardy who has retired from International Football.
Despite being 1/3, Tammy Abraham should be the man who Ings replaces, with the Chelsea forward finding himself injured yet again after coming on as a substitute in their latest defeat to Bayern Munich. If he can regain his fitness and find his early season goal scoring form then who knows, but for now, Ings is the man.
One player who I believe should be on the plane is Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin. In the league under Ancelotti, Calvert Lewin has scored 7 goals in 10 games. He is looking like a top player under the Italian, transforming himself into a guaranteed starter for the Blues. Being priced at 5/2, this could be a very good bet and if he were to continue this form, his odds will certainly drop in the coming weeks.
Breakthrough star Mason Greenwood is a good outsider option at 11/2, scoring five goals in the league this season. Considering Rashford’s injury, Greenwood may be finding himself starting for Man United more regularly and his odds could, and probably will, drop towards the end of the season.
Despite being very early with the prediction, here’s the England 23-man squad I would go for:
Jordan Pickford(1/12), Dean Henderson (1/8), Nick Pope(1/12)
Trent Alexander-Arnold(1/20), Kyle Walker(5/4), Harry Maguire(1/50), John Stones(1/4), Lewis Dunk(20/1), Joe Gomez(1/6), Ben Chilwell(1/20), Luke Shaw(7/4)
Jordan Henderson(1/50), Declan Rice(1/6), Jack Grealish(1/2), Harry Winks(4/5), Oxlade Chamberlain(1/6), Dele Alli(1/8)
Raheem Sterling(1/20), Jadon Sancho(1/16), Harry Kane(1/4), Marcus Rashford(4/6), Dominic Calvert-Lewin(5/2), Danny Ings(1/1)
(Picture Courtesy of Everton FC)