England names 23-player World Cup squad
England were clearly going for youth in Monday's World Cup squad announcement.
England manager Roy Hodgson made a clear youth statement on Monday, taking only a handful of 2010 holdovers in his 23-player World Cup squad.
The most notable omissions included left back Ashley Cole and midfielder Michael Carrick, although both were somewhat expected after their form throughout the season. Cole played sparingly during most of Chelsea's campaign, while Manchester United's poor season hindered Carrick. Throw in the international retirement of John Terry and injuries to players like Theo Walcott and Andros Townsend, and the number of arguments for some of the players not included are few and far between.
Here is the roster:
Goalkeepers: Joe Hart (Manchester City), Ben Foster (West Brom), Fraser Forster (Celtic)
Defenders: Glen Johnson (Liverpool), Phil Jagielka (Everton), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Chris Smalling (Manchester United), Phil Jones (Manchester United), Leighton Baines (Everton), Luke Shaw (Southampton)
Midfielders: Steven Gerrard (Liverpool), Frank Lampard (Chelsea), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), James Milner (Manchester City), Jack Wilshere (Arsenal), Ross Barkley (Everton), Adam Lallana (Southampton), Raheem Sterling (Liverpool), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Arsenal)
Forwards: Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool), Danny Welbeck (Manchester United), Rickie Lambert (Southampton)
Some of the clear forays into the youth movement include Shaw, Barkley and Sterling, with the latter two players's improvement and form toward the end of the season bringing attacking optimism to the squad. Henderson, only 23, could find himself in the starting XI alongside Gerrard in the center of the park.
With the back five (Hart, Johnson, Jagielka, Cahill, Baines) and starting strikeforce (Rooney, Sturridge) essentially set in stone, the big questions for the XI will come down to the last spot in midfield. Gerrard and Henderson should anchor the middle, with Sterling on one wing. Expect Milner, Lallana and maybe Barkley to battle for the last starting spot.
England is in Group D with Uruguay, Italy and Costa Rica.
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