Early predicted England XI for World Cup 2022: Liverpool and Aston Villa stars become integral
For England, the wait goes on. It’s 55 years since the nation lifted silverware, with the World Cup in 1966 still the only major triumph for the Three Lions.
During Euro 2020, Gareth Southgate restored a proud nation’s pride. The lions roared once more and a country united to try and end the long wait for major honours.
Last night, Italy emerged victorious. Their 3-2 win on penalties saw them claim the title, three years after they failed to win a place at the World Cup in Russia.
Roberto Mancini was the hero of the hour on this occasion and for Southgate, he must now go back to the drawing board.
The future does look bright though. The England squad boasts some seriously talented players and more are working their way through the ranks.
As the dust settles on another tournament for England, we looked at how the team could line up for the World Cup in Qatar in 2022.
Goalkeeper and back four
Not a deal should change at the back. Jordan Pickford proved his doubters wrong by claiming the Golden Glove at Euro 2020 and his place looks in no doubt.
Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire were also named in the Team of the Tournament, whilst John Stones has looked back to his best during 2020/21.
One change could come at right-back. Kyle Walker will be 32 by the time the next World Cup comes around and might go as cover for the central defenders.
The Qatar tournament could be the coming of age for Trent Alexander-Arnold. The £75,000-a-week Liverpool star cruelly missed Euro 2020 after picking up an injury in one of England’s warm-up games.
Jordan Henderson didn’t play much of a part in Euro 2020 and he could once again go as an experienced option from the bench.
Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips both enjoyed good tournaments, although one man looks set to start pushing them close for a place.
Jude Bellingham will have another season of football under his belt with Borussia Dortmund and Qatar could be his breakthrough tournament.
That could see Phillips drop out, with Rice probably slightly better at Euro 2020.
Although England were dogged and tough to beat at the most recent tournament a bit more flexibility is perhaps required going forward.
With that in mind, Raheem Sterling might just switch to a No.10 role for the next World Cup.
Jadon Sancho should come in on the right-hand side. His move to Manchester United will surely enhance his chances to play for England.
On the left, Jack Grealish could come in and start making a real impact. He was used more as a substitute at Euro 2020 but if he continues in good form, a starting berth is just around the corner.
Here is how England’s team might look at the World Cup in 2022: