England World Cup squad ladder: In-form James Maddison climbs into contention for Qatar
The Sky Sports England World Cup squad ladder ranks the 40 players most likely to be named to Gareth Southgate’s 26-man team for Qatar 2022. Southgate will unveil his selection on Thursday at 2 p.m.
Gareth Southgate will name his England team for the World Cup in Qatar in just a few days, but who will make the cut?
Over the past two months, the Sky Sports England World Cup squad ladder has been charting the form of the candidates for a spot in his team, and with the big announcement approaching on Thursday, Southgate still has some major decisions to make.
In-form captain Harry Kane (1st) leads the way, while No. 1 goalkeeper Jordan Pickford has risen one spot to second on our scale following some outstanding recent outings for Everton.
John Stones (up two, 9th) is back in action for Manchester City, and his long-term defensive partner for England, Harry Maguire (up one, 15th), also makes our ‘on the plane’ list. The Manchester United center-back may not be playing every game for his club, but he’s fit and Southgate believes in him.
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James Maddison (up six places to 24th) and Trent Alexander-Arnold (up two places to 25th) have been far less certain of a call-up under Southgate, but a combination of fine form – 10 Premier League goals in 12 games for Leicester’s Maddison – and injuries – to Reece James (35th) and Kyle Walker (27th) in Alexander-position Arnold’s – have surely put them in a strong position for involvement
Southgate will have to make some difficult decisions about some marginal players, with the balance and make-up of his team a crucial element, considering that this tournament comes in the middle of an already hard season.
Following Ben Chilwell’s heartbreaking hamstring injury, one critical choice will be who will replace Luke Shaw (10th).
Ryan Sessegnon (up nine spots to 31st) and newcomers Dan Burn (32nd), James Justin (36th), Tyrick Mitchell (37th), Rico Henry (38th), and Aaron Cresswell (39th) will all be hoping for a phone call this week.