On Monday, England manager Roy Hodgson will announce his provisional 30-man squad for next month’s World Cup in Brazil. One player who will not be on the flight to Rio is Chelsea skipper John Terry, who retired from international football in September 2012.
In February of this year, Hodgson ruled out any prospect of the 33-year-old returning to the national side for the summer’s World Cup, but the centre-back’s absence will be a major loss for the Three Lions.
Although omitted from the PFA Premier League Team of the Year, one of the highlights of Chelsea’s season has been the defensive partnership Terry has struck up with England defender Gary Cahill.
With the London club having conceded only 27 goals this campaign - the lowest in the Premier League - Hodgson could really be missing a trick by not trying to persuade the Chelsea captain to come out of retirement for one final tournament to link up with his Blues teammate in Brazil.
There is no doubt that Everton centre-back Phil Jagielka is a worthy partner for Cahill, but one of the vital factors that has been missing when it has come to England at major tournaments is the lack of familiarity in the squad. For the last decade, England have had arguably one of the best teams on paper. Apart from the obvious lack of ability from the penalty spot, one of the criticisms targeted at the national side has been that there have been full of talented individuals rather than a coherent unit.
Liverpool’s successful season will likely mean that Glen Johnson, Steven Gerrard, Jordan Henderson, Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge will all make the squad on Monday, and by not selecting Terry, Hodgson could be missing out on a rare chance to field a side that is filled with successful partnerships from their respective clubs.