In our England Preview: World Cup 2018, we share our analysis about this England team. The Three Lions could go far in this tournament as long as they limit the number of defensive and goalkeeping errors, which are their only weak spots.
England Preview: World Cup 2018
Goalkeepers: Jack Butland, Jordan Pickford, Nick Pope
Defenders: Phil Jones, Gary Cahill, Kyle Walker, Kieran Trippier, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Danny Rose, Ashley Young, John Stones, Harry Maguire
Midfielders: Eric Dier, Jordan Henderson, Fabian Delph, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Jesse Lingard, Dele Alli
Forwards: Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford, Jamie Vardy, Raheem Sterling, Danny Welbeck
- Manager: Gareth Southgate
- Captain: Harry Kane
- Best Finish: Winners (1966)
Likely starting lineup
Whisper it quietly, but this England team, although not the most talented to head to major tournament in recent years, may well just be one of the most popular the nation has had for a long time.
There are a number of reasons as to why certain parts of the country who previously would have no time for the national team are beginning to warm to Gareth Southgate and his side, the primary one being Southgate himself.
In his media duties the former Three Lions defender has handled himself well, deciding against sticking in the boot in on host nation Russia on issues of racism and crowd trouble, instead acknowledging the problems his own country has with those vices.
The other is the recent attacks at aimed at Raheem Sterling from certain sections of the press. The articles penned about the Manchester City star’s lifestyle and tattoos have brought together supporters in wanting to see him and the team do well, for no other reason than him giving two fingers to facets of the media.
Southgate has assembled a handy football team too, one that’s full of inexperience but also full of promise; Gary Cahill is the only man in the squad with more than 50 caps to his name.
While there may be concerns about defence and midfield, England have the potential to do damage in attack. Harry Kane is the captain and has one again shown this season he’s one of the most prolific strikers in European football; in support Southgate has a number of options in Sterling, Marcus Rashford, Jesse Lingard, Dele Alli and Jamie Vardy.
This England team has shown they’re adaptable and determined as they’ve got ready for the competition. They may not have the tools to go all the way in Russia, but perhaps at last the England supporters will be able to enjoy watching the Three Lions at a major tournament again.
Key Man – Harry Kane
Southgate’s decision to hand Kane the captain’s armband for the World Cup felt like the cap on the startling progress made by the Tottenham Hotspur striker in recent years.
Not only does Kane find himself as the leader of his country going into a World Cup, he also carries a reputation as one of the most dangerous strikers at the tournament. After disappointing in the European Championship two years ago—when he was infamously on corner duty for England—there’ll be a fire burning in him.
The 2017-18 campaign was one blemished by some injuries for Kane and the problem he suffered late in the season did appear to rob him of some momentum and sharpness. But with each passing fixture he seems to be regaining his edge in front of goal.
Despite some layoffs, Kane scored 30 Premier League goals last season and will be expected to fire England into the quarter-finals this summer. The 24-year-old now has the chance to show he’s the complete striker and a burgeoning leader on the biggest platform in the sport.
England’s Group Stage fixtures
Monday, June 18
Sunday, June 24
Thursday, June 28
England’s path to the final
If England wins Group G, their Round of 16 game will be against the country that finishes second from Group H which will either be Poland, Senegal, Colombia or Japan. If England wins that Round of 16 game, England will enter the quarterfinal stage with a game against the team that is victorious between the winner of Group F (Costa Rica, Brazil, Serbia or Switzerland) and the team that finishes second in Group E (either Germany, Mexico, South Korea or Sweden). If England advances to the semi-final stage, it’ll play the winner of the quarterfinal that comes out of the A1 vs. B2 versus C1 vs. D2 series.
If England finishes second in Group G, England will play the team that finishes first in Group H (either Poland, Senegal, Colombia or Japan). If England wins that game, it would be in the quarterfinal against the team that is victorious between the winner of Group F (either Germany, Mexico, South Korea or Sweden) and the team that finishes second in Group E (either Brazil, Switzerland, Serbia or Costa Rica). If England advances to the semi-final stage, it’ll play the winner of the quarterfinal that comes out of the B1 vs. A2 versus D1 vs. C2 series.
England World Cup shirt (home)
England will take the field in a crisp, classic white home jersey. A thin red line outlines the collar, with a St. George’s Cross on the back of the neck. A white rosette is on the inside, taken from the rose that is on the caps that the players earn when they suit up for England.
England World Cup shirt (away)
The traditional red away jersey has a two-tone graphic on the front in the shape of a St. George’s Cross. A small version of the cross is on the back collar. A red rosette is on the inside, taken from the rose that is on the caps that the players earn when they suit up for England.
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