Sports Journalist at FST, Gareth qualified as a journalist after graduating from university and spent over a decade as a freelance broadcast journalist, commentator and tipster before joining FST. Now living in Manchester, he is a long suffering Bolton Wanderers fan who also enjoys boxing, the NBA, tennis and rugby league.
Time is running out for any players on the fringes of the England squad to force their way into Gareth Southgate’s travelling party for the World Cup in Qatar at the end of the year – but there will still be spots to play for.
There have been 83 players who have featured for England during Southgate’s time in charge and a further eight have been called up without getting on the pitch. The Three Lions boss isn’t afraid to call on inexperienced players if he feels they can add something to his squad.
I’ve taken a look at bet365’s to make the England World Cup 2022 finals squad market and picked out a few uncapped individuals who may have an outside chance of being involved.
It is worth noting that at Euro 2020 squad sizes were increased to 26 players but as it stands Southgate will have to select a 23-man squad for Qatar – meaning he already has to omit a few players who were in his last tournament squad. However, England do have eight games lined up before the next World Cup; two friendlies in March, against Switzerland and Ivory Coast, then four Nations League games in June and two more in September, so the manager does have opportunities to try out some fresh faces.
It will take a huge effort for any uncapped player to break into the set-up but it isn’t impossible and the following five aren’t out of contention just yet.
Jarrod Bowen (West Ham)
West Ham forward Jarrod Bowen wasn’t involved in the England set-up as a youth player and the 25-year-old has only really been a Premier League player for the last two and a half seasons after joining the Hammers from Hull (he did play seven top flight games with the Tigers back in the 2017/17 season). Bowen has been a key man for West Ham this season as they push for a top four finish, registering six goals and seven assists in 23 outings.
The former Hereford United man clearly has the talent to play for England and is producing the kind of numbers in goals and assists that mean he has to be a part of the conversation. Southgate already has a number of attacking options but there are a few who look vulnerable – Manchester United pair Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford and Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin were in the Euro 2020 squad but haven’t had the kind of season Bowen has – so it isn’t completely out of the question.
Harvey Elliott (Liverpool)
Liverpool winger Harvey Elliott was being talked up for an England debut before suffering a serious ankle injury in September. The 18-year-old is now back in training and if he can pick up where he left off before his injury blow he could still be in with a chance of forcing his way into the Three Lions World Cup squad.
Trevoh Chalobah (Chelsea)
Trevoh Chalobah has been playing regularly for Chelsea this season and has played for England at various youth levels, up to the Under 21s. The 22-year-old can operate at centre-half and in a holding midfield role, so that versatility works in his favour. Southgate seems fairly settled on John Stones and Harry Maguire as his starting centre-halves, but Chalobah has time to challenge the likes of Ben White and Conor Coady for a place in the World Cup 2022 travelling party.
Omar Richards (Bayern Munich)
Omar Richards is a 20/1 outsider to make the finals squad and it would take a huge effort for him to force his way into the picture. The 23-year-old former Reading man has only played in eight Bundesliga games for Bayern this season, but if he were to force his way into their first XI for an extended period that would almost automatically make him a contender for one of the 23 spots available in Southgate’s squad. It looks unlikely right now, but if Lucas Hernandez or possibly Kingsley Coman were to pick up an injury then Richards could find himself starting regularly for Bayern and the England manager would have to take notice.
Curtis Jones (Liverpool)
Like his Liverpool team-mate Elliott, Curtis Jones has seen his progress set back by injury as he missed around two months from the start of November to the end of December but he is now back and playing regularly for the Anfield outfit, having started their last two Premier League games. The 20-year-old has made 30 appearances at youth level for England and seems destined to make the step up to the senior squad in the not-too-distant future, but the next World Cup may come too soon.
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