World Cup 2014: Who should make the England squad this summer?

World Cup 2014: Who should make the England squad this summer?


It’s getting very close! With just over 57 days left to wait until the start of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, talk has now centred around the possible England squad for the tournament, with a host of dark horses now being mentioned alongside the nailed-on candidates.


Dear old Roy Hodgson’s been doing the rounds for many months now, popping up all over the country to watch prospective candidates for his provisional 30-man England squad. It’s got to the stage that, almost every time an England player does anything decidedly good or bad, Roy is shown looking on intently from the stands!


But who should he take with him to South America? Check out my final 23-man squad that I think should be hopping on the plane this summer:

Goalkeepers: Joe Hart, John Ruddy, Fraser Forster


Manchester City’s Hart, despite some dodgy moments over the last few years, remains England’s number one, and rightly so. He will be first names on the squad, and I reckon Norwich’s John Ruddy and Celtic keeper Fraser Forster will join him.

The Daily Record revealed earlier this month that the trio had been selected and photographed for the official England World Cup sticker book! Done deal then…?

Defenders: Leighton Baines, Gary Cahill, Ashley Cole, Phil Jagielka, Glen Johnson, Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Kyle Walker


Most of the talk concerning the defence has centred around Ashley Cole’s possible exclusion for Southampton starlet Luke Shaw. For me, the Chelsea veteran should be going to the World Cup, despite his lack of game time for the Champions League semi-finalists.

Cole has been one of the best left-backs the game has ever seen, and as Shaw is still only 18 and has a long and exciting career ahead of him, Cole should be permitted one last hurrah on the biggest stage.

I’d even say that, due to his experience and enduring ability, he should still be the England number one, despite being marginalised at Stamford Bridge, but I am certainly in the minority.


Gary Cahill and Phil Jagielka are set to be the centre back pairing to start the tournament, with the likes of Phil Jones and Chris Smalling useful defenders due to their versatility. Glen Johnson and Kyle Walker will surely be the right-back duo.

Midfielders: Jordan Henderson, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Jack Wilshere, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Adam Lallana, James Milner, Raheem Sterling


Skipper Gerrard’s a shoe-in, while Frank Lampard should be included for experience and general know-how. Jack Wilshere must be there, with the Arsenal man just one tournament away from being a world star.

Southampton captain Adam Lallana, although not initially my cup of tea, has done more than enough in recent months to warrant his inclusion, while Jordan Henderson simply must go to Brazil.


I was not a fan of the former Sunderland man until this season, and boy, how I have had to change my tune.

Still just 23, Henderson has been a veritable force of nature in the heart of the Liverpool midfield this season, and I am a strong advocate of a Wilshere/Henderson central midfield for the future.

England v Scotland - International Friendly

With Theo Walcott a goner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will be charged with providing the explosion on the wings, along with the raw Raheem Sterling. I believe both players have the ability to create for England, especially the Ox, and it will certainly be a huge summer for the pair.

James Milner must not be forgotten. The Manchester City man is one of the most underrated players around, and must be permitted to showcase his tremendous versatility and drive on the biggest stage of all. His performance against Liverpool on the weekend surely nets him a place.

Strikers: Wayne Rooney, Daniel Sturridge, Danny Welbeck, Rickie Lambert

I am very much looking forward to seeing Rooney and Sturridge play together in a World Cup, as if the pair can click, fireworks are sure to follow.


Possessing of an almost arrogant footballing technique, the pair could be devastating if given the right ammunition. Sturridge in particular has blossomed at Liverpool this season, and his stock has sky-rocketed. This could be the tournament that puts him in the top bracket of strikers on the planet.


Every team needs a ‘Plan B’, and that should be Lambert for England. The Southampton man is a proven goalscorer, and provides a different service to the likes of Sturridge and Rooney. It’s surely a straight choice between Lambert and Carroll for the role as target man, and for me, its the former Bristol Rovers man.

Danny Welbeck rounds off my squad, with the United man making the cut due to his versatility and pace, of which England are rather lacking.

What do you think? Agree with my selection? Let me know in the comments below…

Also see: The new FIFA 2014 World Cup game is now out. Read our review.

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Based in London, I am a freelance journalist and a real football fanatic. Predominantly a feature writer, I currently contribute to, and, as well as maintaining my blog: I dream of reporting on football in the far flung reaches of the globe. A graduate from the London School of Journalism, I am passionate and determined to bring an impartial view on the game we all love and crave.


  1. Pretty good prediction. Apart from Ashley Cole hasn’t featured at all this season and it would be ridiculous to pick him over a young attacking style player who has played in almost every game this season.

    Luke Shaw has proven his ability at club level so I think he should be given the chance on the international stage as number 2 to Baines.

  2. Ross Barkley should be in there, and also Luke Shaw…Smalling doesn’t deserve to go just because he plays for Man U, hes been mediocre at best this season

    • No Henderson or Milner maybe Zaha ,Delph , young or Barkley. I would chose Zaha he has pace , skill, strength ,vision and an alright shot. He’s Explosive . At Cardiff and Man U he hasn’t been given enough chances though we have seen what he can do at crystal palace he took them to the premier league.

  3. Henderson shouldn’t be there neither should Milner personally Milner is not that good anymore and Henderson isn’t good enough yet. Maybe Barkley , Young , Zaha , Delph and Townsend should be played

    • Do you even watch football, I think not. Henderson and Milner are two of the best english players, Henderson has been outperforming many of his fellow english man.

      • I think yes. Henderson is good but not good enough!Milner ha ha ha lol when I think of him I just laugh! He is officially shit. You have got no taste. Milner has no pace no skill no good shots. His crosses are average my nan ‘ s better than him.

      • I think yes Henderson is’nt that good anymore . Milner ha ha ha lol. When I think of him all I do is laugh. He is officially shit. !Return to sender. We’re you dropped as a baby. Are you mad! He would be better as a defender.
        He is useless. He has no pace no skill no vision no good shots and an average cross. My nan is better than him.

  4. I agree Zaha is AMAZING! He just hasn’t been given enough chances at Cardiff or Man U but as we all saw at crystal palace he was world class pace , skill, vision , energy and an alright eye for goal. explosive

  5. I don’t agree with Milner I thinck Delph but apart from that great , cool ,good ,nice ,ace and awesome prediction. Lol.

  6. Zaha & Delph to the World Cup? Are you guys on Crack?! Barkley has been pretty great this season but doesn’t deserve to go yet! Andros Townsend should go for sure, he’s got the legs and isn’t afraid to let a shot off from outside the box!
    Now I’m a Chelsea fan, but Ashley Cole should definitely not go to the World Cup! Despite his obvious class! He just hasn’t got the legs anymore to fill the role that he, let’s be honest, pioneered! Baines is a class act, he’s got the legs, great crosser, not afraid to cut inside and takes a decent free kick! Luke shaw should go as the backup left back for sure!

  7. Hart
    Oxlaide Chamberlain

    in the 30:

    • Goalkeepers. Joe hart , john ruddy , forester.
      Defenders. Glen Johnson , Kyle walker , Gary Cahill , phil jagielka , Luke shaw , Chris smalling , Leighton Bains
      Midfielders. Steven Gerrard , Frank Lampard , jack wilshere , Adam Lallana , Fabien Delph , Ashely young , Ross Barkely ,Raheem Sterling
      Forwards. Daniel Sturridge , Wayne Rooney , Danny welbeck , Ricky Lambert , willfried Zaha
      23 England World Cup squad

  8. England should play. Hart
    Johnson Cahill Jagielka Shaw
    Gerrard Wilshere
    Sterling Rooney Wellbeck

  9. shaw should go instead of cole. cole has barely played this season.

    and cant believe Townsend isnt in your squad think he will make the cut considering sterling is the only natural wide man in there.

    and barkley should probably go but doubt he will.

  10. England will go far in Brazil & possibly win the world cup, its up to Roy to select wisely, he’s spoiled for choices, just look @ Sterling, Wilshere, Chamberlain, Sturridge, amazing talents & technically gifted.

  11. Hart, Ruddy, Forster
    Johnson, Walker, Jagielka, Cahill, Jones, Smalling, Shaw, Cole, Baines
    Henderson, Wilshere, Chamberlain, Gerrard, Lallana, Townsend
    Rooney, Sturridge, Welbeck, Lambert,


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