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What is next for the England under 21 squad?

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What is next for the England under 21 squad?

With the World Cup approaching Roshane Thomas looks at which of the Under-21s have what it takes to force their way into Roy Hodgson’s senior team.

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It has been a poor summer for the England Under 21 squad. After failing to showcase their talent at the European Under-21 Championship, held in Israel, they subsequently finished bottom of their group.
With the World Cup approaching I will take a look at which of the Under-21s have what it takes to force their way into Roy Hodgson’s senior team.
Name: Jack Butland
Position: Goalkeeper
Age: 20
Club: Stoke City
With Manchester City’s Joe Hart set to become England’s No.1 keeper for a number of years, Butland hasn’t done himself any harm in giving three Lions boss Roy Hodgson a selection dilemma.
The 20 year-old, who has one senior England cap, pulled of a string of fine performances for Birmingham City last season, which resulted in Stoke City luring the shot-stopper to the Britannia Stadium.
However, Butland failed to impress during this summers’ U21 Championship which has cast doubt over whether he can regain his place in Hodgson’s senior team. But if the former Cheltenham Town loanee can continue his development at Stoke City this campaign, it could quite possibly earn him a place in next summer’s World Cup.
SENIOR CHANCE: YES
 
Name: Danny Rose
Position: Left back
Age: 23
Club: Tottenham Hotspur
Danny Rose had a solid spell out on loan at Sunderland last season. The 23 year-old was guaranteed first-team football, which would have most certainly boosted his confidence levels.
But now he is back at Spurs the left-back will have limited playing time under Villas-Boas this term and should seek a move elsewhere in order to showcase his ability. With Ashley Cole and Leighton Baines the only recognized left-backs in the senior team, and nearing the end of their careers Rose has a brilliant chance to force his into Hodgson’s England squad.
SENIOR TEAM: YES
Name: Craig Dawson
Position: Centre back
Age: 23
Club: West Brom
Since his switch to West Brom in 2010 from Rochdale, Dawson has only made nine appearances for the Baggies. The centre-half has featured heavily in their U21 side for the past two years, but has yet to prove himself in the top-flight.
Dawson should seek a move elsewhere in order to gain valuable playing time. The Championship would be a ideal level for him, as he enjoyed a brief spell on loan at Bolton Wanderers last season where he netted four goals in 16 appearances.
SENIOR TEAM: NO  
Name: Steven Caulker
Position: Centre back
Age: 21
Club: Tottenham
This will be a massive season for Caulker. The centre-back has impressed at Spurs when given the chance by Villas-Boas. He is good enough to be a first team player for the North London club, and has to perform consistently to boost his chances in earning a place in next summer’s World Cup squad.
The 21 year-old made a perfect introduction into his England career when he scored on his senior debut against Sweden. With no recognised central paring in Hodgson’s starting eleven this gives Caulker a great chance to regain his place in the heart of defence.
SENIOR TEAM: YES
 
Name: Nathaniel Clyne
Age: 22
Position: Right back
Club: Southampton
The highly-rated right-back had a solid debut season at Southampton with many tipping the former Palace man to become one of the best full-backs in the division.
It will be hard for Clyne to force his way into Hodgson’s England squad with the likes of Kyle Walker, Glen Johnson and Micah Richards already challenging for the right-back position.
However, if the 22 year-old keeps performing well for the Saints that will put him in good stead for a selection in Hodgson’s England squad for next summer’s World Cup.
SENIOR TEAM: YES 
Name: Jordan Henderson
Age: 23
Position: Midfielder
Club: Liverpool
Since his big money switch to Liverpool from Sunderland in 2011 Henderson has found it hard to perform consistently for the Reds. He has been capped five times for England but I doubt he will be able to add to that anytime soon.
Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has made a number of signings so far in this transfer window – as they aim to clinch a top-four finish. It looks set to be a massive season for Henderson but I don’t think he is good enough yet to merit a place in the England squad.
SENIOR TEAM: NO 
Name: Jonjo Shelvey
Age: 21
Position: Midfielder
Club: Swansea City
Jonjo Shelvey had a miserable tournament at the European Under-21 Championship. Nonetheless, this did not deter Swansea City from clinching a £6m move for the midfielder.
Now the 21 year-old is at a new club where he will play regular first-team football it will further strengthen his development – and surely boost his confidence levels.
I believe Shelvey will feature in the England squad in the future but with his recent switch to Swansea he will need time to settle – which may subsequently result in the ex-Charlton Athletic trainee missing out on a place in next summer’s World Cup squad.
SENIOR TEAM: MAYBE
 
Name: Tom Ince
Age: 21
Position: Winger
Club: Blackpool – set to join Cardiff City
Tom Ince looks set to join Premier League newcomers Cardiff City for a fee believed to be in the region of £6m.
A move to the Premier League would be brilliant for the 21 year-old as a possible switch to the Bluebirds will guarantee the former Liverpool trainee first-team football.
Ince looks set to have a bright future, and if he can continue his fine form which we all saw at Blackpool last season he could be called up to the senior England team in the near future.
SENIOR TEAM: MAYBE
 
Name: Nathaniel Chalobah
Age: 18
Position: Midfielder
Club: Chelsea
Chalobah had a fantastic loan spell at Watford last season where they narrowly missed out on promotion to the Premier League.
The 18 year-old scored five goals in 38 appearances for the Hornets and has been capped seven times for the England U21 side. I don’t think Chalobah is ready to force his into the first-team at Chelsea this term – but another loan spell at a Championship club will be very beneficial for the youngster.
The strong and athletic the Chelsea midfielder is destined to have a bright career and possesses all the right attributes to become a England captain in the future.
SENIOR TEAM: YES 
 
Name: Nathan Redmond
Age: 19
Position: Winger
Club: Norwich City
Redmond has recently signed for Norwich City for £3.2m on a four-year deal following a memorable season at Birmingham City last campaign.
Despite a poor showing from England in the U21 European Championship Redmond performed relatively well, highlighting why Canaries boss Chris Hughton was desperate to sign the youngster.
I have no doubt Redmond will earn his place at senior level he just needs to knuckle down and continue working hard. It will be a huge season for the 19 year-old.
SENIOR TEAM: YES 
Name: Josh McEachran
Age: 20
Position: Midfielder
Club: Chelsea
When McEachran made his debut for Chelsea at the tender age of 17 big things were expected from the highly-rated midfielder.
However, despite making 11 appearances for the Blues his progression at the club has stalled and as a result has been loaned out to Swansea and Middlesborough in order to get game time.
The next move for the 20 year-old will be vital. There is no doubt McEachran is a fine player but he needs to go to a club where he develop into a top player.
SENIOR TEAM: MAYBE
Name: Wilfried Zaha
Age: 20
Position: Winger
Club: Manchester United
The former Crystal Palace star has already earned a senior cap for England and will most certainly add to that in the future. Zaha will be out to impress Manchester United manager David Moyes this term following his £15m move to Old Trafford.
The highly-rated winger was named Championship Player of the Year as he played a pivotal role in helping Palace clinch promotion to the Premier League.
Looks set to be a huge season for the 20 year-old.
SENIOR TEAM: YES
Name: Connor Wickham
Age: 20
Position: Striker
Club: Sunderland
Connor Wickham was hailed as being the next big thing in English football when he burst onto the scene at Ipswich. He then transfered to Sunderland for £8m but has struggled to make any real impact at the Stadium of Light.
Wickham then had a brief loan spell at Sheffield Wednesday where he scored once in six appearances. Nevertheless. the former Ipswich star is still just 20 and has plenty of time to develop.
But right now the Sunderland striker isn’t good enough for the Premier League as well as the England senior team.
SENIOR TEAM: NO
 
Name: Marvin Sordell
Age: 22
Position: Striker
Club: Bolton Wanderers
Sordell showed bags of potential during his playing days at Watford. But since his switch to Bolton the striker has failed to hit the ground running.
With the likes of Daniel Sturridge, Danny Welbeck and Wayne Rooney in the senior team the 22 year-old will find it hard forcing his way into Hodgson’s England squad.
SENIOR TEAM: NO

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