Five surprises in Allardyce's England squad feat. Manchester United and West Ham stars
Following his appointment as England boss, Sam Allardyce’s attentions will immediately switch to his first England squad for the World Cup qualifier against Slovakia in September, with changes expected from the squad of 23 that disappointingly exited the Euros against Iceland.
Allardyce has, fairly or not, developed a reputation for a style of football which is not the most attractive on the eye, but he is well known as being good at scraping out a result and getting the best out of the players available to him.
With that in mind, it seems likely that Allardyce’s first squad could contain a few surprises as he seeks players who will fight for the side and will fit his style of football. It seems inevitable that some of the so called “luxury players” like Jack Wilshere may pay the price, but the former West Ham manager will want to put his stamp on to the England side.
With two years left to go until the World Cup in Russia, the recent Sunderland boss has time to adapt those on his playing stagg and find the best possible squad, which may mean that his first few selections give chances to some names who have previously missed out. Over the next few pages, we look at five of the players who could benefit from such selections.
One of the more notable omissions from Roy Hodgson’s final England squad, Noble has attracted plaudits for his consistent performances in the West Ham midfield as the Hammers returned to European football thanks to some impressive performances under Slaven Bilic.
A popular man at club level, and popular with Allardyce when he was West Ham boss, the captain could provide some steel in England’s midfield and would provide cover for Eric Dier in the holding role, as Hodgson was so heavily criticised for taking only one defensive midfield option to France.
With 20 caps at under-21 level but not having played for his nation since then, at 29 Noble could well expect that any chance of a call-up had already gone, but Allardyce’s performance may well have changed that. With seven goals and four assists in 37 league games last season, Noble offers more than just defensive cover, for with his passing he can create chances for others.
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