England’s final 23-man squad for the 2018 World Cup was revealed on Wednesday, with manager Gareth Southgate going for a number of bold choices.
Established international regulars such as Joe Hart and Jack Wilshere miss out, while predicted wildcards such as Jonjo Shelvey also failed to make the cut.
So, who will be travelling to Russia this summer to try to end 52 years of hurt? Sportsmail has profiled the England squad here…
England’s final 23 man squad for the 2018 World Cup was revealed on Wednesday
Jordan Pickford (England caps: two)
The Everton goalkeeper looks to have fought off the competition to earn the No 1 jersey in Russia after two very impressive seasons, first with Sunderland then at Goodison Park. He has looked assured in friendlies against Germany and Holland with two clean sheets.
Jordan Pickford looks set to be England’s No 1 after a strong season for Everton
Jack Butland (England caps: seven)
A disappointing domestic season, which saw Stoke relegated from the Premier League while shipping a division-high 68 goals, has not stopped Butland from boarding the plane to Russia. Played 90 minutes in the friendly draw with Italy.
Jack Butland goes to Russia despite Stoke City shipping 68 goals as they were relegated
Nick Pope (England caps: none)
Chosen as third-choice keeper over the experienced Hart after an exceptional season with Burnley, where he started as No 2 behind Tom Heaton but took his chance following an injury to the former Manchester United trainee.
Nick Pope was picked in the squad for friendlies against Holland and Italy but didn’t play
John Stones (England caps: 24)
Injuries hampered his season, as did Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola favouring a partnership of Vincent Kompany and Nicolas Otamendi at centre back during points of the campaign. However, he is liked by Southgate and is a trusted starter for England.
John Stones is likely to start for England despite playing just 18 league games last season
Gary Cahill (England caps: 58)
Appeared to be at risk of missing out on a place in the squad with Southgate favouring more ball-playing defenders, however injury to Joe Gomez and a lack of experience elsewhere means Cahill goes to Russia as England’s most capped player.
Gary Cahill is the most capped player in Gareth Southgate’s England squad, with 58 games
Phil Jones (England caps: 24)
Another defender who has struggled with injury this season – he missed two months with hamstring problems – Jones is also picked to provide extra experience in a young squad, having made his senior England debut back in 2011.
Phil Jones has recovered from a number of injury problems this season to make the squad
Harry Maguire (England caps: four)
After impressing despite Hull’s relegation in 2016-17, Maguire proved at Leicester that he is the sort of cultured defender, comfortable with the ball at his feet, that Southgate admires. Yet to concede a goal in four international appearances.
Harry Maguire proved at Leicester that he is the sort of cultured defender Southgate likes
Kyle Walker (England caps: 34)
Eyebrows were raised when Walker was deployed on the right of three centre backs in the friendly against Holland, but he looked at ease in the role and will most likely be played there in Russia, rather than in the rampaging right-back position where he impressed for Man City as they blew the Premier League away.
Kyle Walker played at right back for Manchester City but could play centrally for England
Kieran Trippier (England caps: five)
If Walker plays at centre back, Tottenham’s Trippier looks to be the No 1 pick at right wing-back. After Walker left Spurs for City, Trippier became first choice for Mauricio Pochettino and looked at home in the Premier League and Champions League.
Kieran Trippier emerged as Tottenham’s No 1 right back after Walker left for Man City
Ashley Young (England caps: 33)
At one stage looking like a washed-up winger, Young has been reinvented as a left back at Manchester United and could start for England in their opener against Tunisia. Has scored seven international goals – but the last one was in 2013.
Ashley Young has been reinvented as a left back and could start the opener against Tunisia
Danny Rose (England caps: 16)
Has struggled with injury this season, as well as the aftermath of ill-advised comments about Tottenham’s transfer policy last summer. Looked rusty against Holland in the recent friendly, but has done enough to edge out Ryan Bertrand.
Danny Rose has struggled for game time this season but edges out Ryan Bertrand in the squad
Trent Alexander-Arnold (England caps: none)
The Liverpool full back had never even been called up by his country for the senior team before Wednesday, but his fantastic season – including starring in the Reds’ run to the Champions League final – merits his inclusion.
Trent Alexander-Arnold had never even been called up by his country for the senior team
Eric Dier (England caps: 25)
England’s Mr Adaptable, Dier can play at centre back and in defensive midfield, and should expect to fulfill both roles at various points during the finals. His finest moment in an England shirt was a super free-kick against Russia at Euro 2016.
Eric Dier can play at centre back or in midfield, making him a valuable asset for Southgate
Jordan Henderson (England caps: 38)
Liverpool’s captain has had a stellar season, providing the foundations from which Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino have ripped teams apart – and he has a Champions League final to come. Currently the favourite to captain England at the World Cup.
Jordan Henderson could captain England in Russia after a great season for Liverpool
Dele Alli (England caps: 23)
Has endured the quietest season of a fantastic Spurs career so far, where questions about his end product and his diving tendencies have overshadowed his prodigious skill. Not a guaranteed starter in Russia, but capable of moments of brilliance.
Dele Alli has not shone this season but remains a massively important part of England’s plans
Ruben Loftus-Cheek (England caps: two)
His selection for the friendly against Germany was cited as being evidence of England’s shallow talent pool, but he hugely impressed and it is memories of that display that have carried him to Russia. Another with a season hampered by injury, but nevertheless key in Crystal Palace’s survival.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s debut against Germany showed he can play on the international stage
Jesse Lingard (England caps: 10)
His blistering mid-season form – six goals in nine Premier League games between November and January – moved Lingard from the fringes of Manchester United and England to key-man status. In competition with Alli for a starting spot.
Jesse Lingard has had a breakthrough season for Manchester United with some top displays
Raheem Sterling (England caps: 37)
For a player whose final product is often questioned, 23 goals and 17 assists in 46 games for the English champions in 2017-18 is a phenomenal return. Poor for England at Euro 2016, he has matured and improved massively since.
Raheem Sterling scored 23 goals in 46 games last season, and assisted another 17 for City
Fabian Delph (England caps: nine)
Chosen ahead of Wilshere, Delph seems to have recovered from his litany of injury problems better than his Arsenal counterpart, and is a more adaptable squad player – 23 of his 24 appearances for City last season came as a left back.
Fabian Delph has been picked ahead of Jack Wilshere, despite a lack of midfield appearances
Harry Kane (England caps: 23)
England fans were sweating after Kane suffered an ankle injury against Bournemouth in March and looked rusty on his return, but he seems to have found his golden touch just in time. Hopefully will not be taking corners, as he did at Euro 2016.
Harry Kane had an injury scare in March, but looks to be returning to form for the summer
Jamie Vardy (England caps: 21)
While Kane and Salah battled it out for the Premier League Golden Boot, Vardy quietly went about having a superb scoring season, with 23 goals in 42 games. As a back up to Kane, Vardy provides a highly valuable option for Southgate.
Jamie Vardy has enjoyed a fantastic goal scoring season, with 23 strikes in 42 appearances
Danny Welbeck (England caps: 37)
Despite his uninspiring scoring record for Arsenal – 10 in 43 appearances this season and a long history of injury problems, Welbeck has big tournament knowledge and is now regarded as one of the squad’s most experienced members.
Danny Welbeck is now among the most experienced members of the England team
Marcus Rashford (England caps: 17)
Two years ago, Rashford was Roy Hodgson’s wildcard pick for Euro 2016 after a storming six months for Man United. Now he is established for club and country, although a few off-the-boil performances late in the season are cause for concern.
Marcus Rashford was the wildcard for England at Euro 2016 and now makes his World Cup bow