Ex Arsenal man Ray Parlour had his say on who should fly to Brazil next summer. Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United and Chelsea players all feature…
GK: Joe Hart, Ben Foster, Fraser Forster
Hart remains under pressure after a disappointing start to the season, but a good performance against Germany should keep him between the sticks. Roy Hodgson persuaded his former West Brom goalkeeper Ben Foster to come out of international retirement, making it unlikely that he will leave him at home, whilst Fraser Forster has received support from many people with regards to replacing Joe Hart. John Ruddy's up and down period with Premier League strugglers Norwich City may cost him his place on the plane.
DEF: Glen Johnson, Phil Jagielka, Gary Cahill, Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Ashley Cole, Leighton Baines, Kyle Walker
Parlour's squad contains the usual; four starters and four backups across the backline. The four players at full back appear to be firmly entrenched, though the starting players are anything but. However, the situation at centre back is more murky. Gary Cahill is arguably the player with the best chance of starting the first game in Brazil, barring injury, but his partner could be anyone at this point. Steven Caulker and Michael Dawson will be hoping for strong ends to the season, with nobody really standing out in the centre of defence.
MID: Steven Gerrard, Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott, Tom Cleverley, Frank Lampard, Andros Townsend, James Milner
Now, personally, I wouldn't take James Milner. I don't see what he offers. Sure, he works hard, but would you really give him a spot in the squad over Michael Carrick or Adam Lallana? Carrick should be one of the first names on the plane, whilst Lallana offers creativity and guile that England don't get from Walcott or Townsend. Tom Cleverley is another name who could be under pressure after an underwhelming display against Germany, with Ross Barkley enjoying a fine season for Everton.
ATT: Danny Welbeck, Wayne Rooney, Daniel Sturridge, Rickie Lambert, Jermain Defoe
Welbeck, Rooney and Sturridge are almost certainly on their way to Brazil, but the final two still have some work to do. Lambert offers England physicality and aerial prowess that can only really be challenged by Andy Carroll, who is still injured, meaning the Southampton striker is in the box seat. Defoe isn't starting games for Spurs, and with Saido Berahino and Jay Rodriguez emerging, he could find himself missing out.
Personal opinion: Milner offers nothing that could be classed as more worthy than what Lallana brings, so I'd take the Southampton man. With Welbeck, Rooney, Sturridge and Lambert I think England can afford to drop Defoe in order to bring in Carrick, with a number of players in the midfield able to push further forward.
image: © Ethan.K