England’s 26-man World Cup squad decided by WhoScored ratings

A look at who should be on the plane to Qatar with England according to WhoScored’s Premier League performance ratings.
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Gareth Southgate has already submitted his 55-man provisional England squad to FIFA ahead of the fast-approaching World Cup.

We are now just weeks away from the big kick-off in Qatar, and Southgate is expected to name his final 26-man squad for the competition next week, on November 10. But before that, an extended squad of up to 55 players must be submitted, and national team bosses can only select players from that list for their final squad.

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Not all managers have selected as many as 55 players, but well aware that injuries could occur in the next week or so, Southgate is said to have used the maximum allocation. Unlike many others, England have not made the list public, deciding that only the final list will be made available.

But as ever, there have been leaks to the media, and The Athletic have reported that the likes of Danny Welbeck, Lewis Dunk and Ruben Loftus-Cheek have made it on to the extended list. Of course, that doesn’t mean those players will make the final 26-man squad, but it does mean they are in with a chance.

Tough decisions face Southgate over the next week, and the Three Lions boss will also be praying that key players don’t pick up injuries in the Premier League before the tournament gets going, with two league games remaining for the lion’s share of players before the World Cup break begins.

Some of the trickier choices facing Southgate are whether James Maddison makes it onto the plane, as well as whether to take Ben White, Conor Coady, Kalvin Phillips, Conor Gallagher, Ivan Toney or Callum Wilson. There are decisions aplenty to ponder over in the time between now and the submission of the final squad.

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Decisions for a World Cup are based on a number of variables, including raw talent, being a team player, being able to play more than one position, having the right attitude, being reliable, being used to the setup, being able to offer that something different. But what if selection was simply based on statistics? Who would make it on to the plane to Qatar?

With the help of the WhoScored rankings, here is what England’s squad should look like based on form based on the squad being made up of three goalkeepers, 10 defenders, six midfielders and seven forwards.

Goalkeepers

Jordan Pickford - 7.06

Nick Pope - 6.84

Aaron Ramsdale - 6.68

This could well be the England goalkeeper line-up for this World Cup. Dean Henderson is the other goalkeeper under consideration, but these three goalkeepers are the most in form. Pickford has been excellent with Everton, while Pope has been solid behind that Newcastle back-line. Ramsdale has been part of Arsenal’s excellent start to the season.

Defenders

Kieran Trippier - 7.59

James Tarkowski - 7.03

Ben Mee - 6.97

Ben White - 6.86

Aaron Cresswell - 6.80

Trent Alexander-Arnold - 6.79

Alexander-Arnold’s stats suggest he has been better than perceived Alexander-Arnold’s stats suggest he has been better than perceived
Alexander-Arnold’s stats suggest he has been better than perceived

Eric Dier - 6.79

Dan Burn - 6.76

John Stones 6.72

Joe Gomez - 6.70

Some of these players will travel, while the likes of Aaron Cresswell, Ben Mee and possibly Dan Burn won’t. Reece James and Ben Chilwell are fighting to return, while Kyle Walker will be likely to go.

Midfielders

Jude Bellingham - 7.51

James Maddison - 7.41

Declan Rice - 7.0

Jack Grealish - 7.1

Mason Mount - 6.87

Marcus Tavernier - 6.84

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The top five are certainly in the conversation here, while Jordan Henderson is likely to be involved. Conor Gallagher and Kalvin Phillips will also be in contention. Marcus Tavernier is not expected to be in with a chance. James Ward-Prowse is also expected to be in with a good shout. The big question is whether Southgate will take Maddison and Grealish.

Forwards

Harry Kane - 7.44

Phil Foden - 7.34

Bukayo Saka - 7.3

Ivan Toney - 7.18

Callum Wilson - 7.15

Solly March - 6.94

Marcus Rashford - 6.82

This is a pretty solid line up of forwards for England, but you would only expect one of Wilson or Toney to travel. Raheem Sterling is likely to get one of those spots, while Tammy Abraham will go ahead of Solly March, who is not in realistic contention. The top four are nailed on to be on the plane, as long as they stay fit.

The likely contenders

Here are some of the players who could be on the plane but find themselves outside the top performers in their respective positions.

Dean Henderson - 6.58

Luke Shaw - 6.66

Ben Chilwell - 6.51*

Reece James - 7.11*

Kyle Walker - 6.7

Harry Maguire - 6.63

Back in the side for the first time since Man United's 3-1 win over Arsenal on September 4, Maguire made three blocks and provided eight clearances to help his side edge past West Ham.Back in the side for the first time since Man United's 3-1 win over Arsenal on September 4, Maguire made three blocks and provided eight clearances to help his side edge past West Ham.
Back in the side for the first time since Man United's 3-1 win over Arsenal on September 4, Maguire made three blocks and provided eight clearances to help his side edge past West Ham.

Connor Coady - 6.58

Lewis Dunk - 6.52

james Ward-Prowse - 6.81

Conor Gallagher - 6.53

Jordan Henderson - 6.52

Ruben Loftus-Cheek - 6.56

Kalvin Phillips - 6.05

Danny Welbeck - 6.76

Raheem Sterling - 6.68

Tammy Abraham - 6.81

Didn’t qualify due to not meeting minimum appearances.

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