Goalkeepers – Joe Hart (Man City), Jack Butland (Stoke) and Tom Heaton (Burnley)
There was no real shocks in the shot-stopping department with England’s number one Joe Hart being joined by understudy Jack Butland and Championship stoper Tom Heaton.
Butland has been phenomenal this season and looks destined to succeed Joe Hart when his times up, but for now he’ll have to play second fiddle to the City keeper.
Hodgson favoured Burnley’s Tom Heaton over the likes of Premier League goalies John Ruddy and Ben Foster, perhaps a left field move, however it’s nice to see Roy pick players based on form rather than their club status.
Defenders – Ryan Bertrand (Southampton), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool), Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal), Phil Jagielka (Everton), Phil Jones (Manchester United), Chris Smalling (Manchester United), John Stones (Everton)
When one door closes, another opens and this time Ryan Bertrand’s return to fitness is timely with his fellow countryman Luke Shaw suffering a long-term injury.
England manager Roy Hodgson conceded he was gutted about the left-back’s injury and called it ‘heartbreaking’ for the 20-year old. He also said he thinks Shaw could have been the best left-back at the Euro’s.
Kieran Gibbs’s selection will raise a few eyebrows, due to him struggling to hold down a first team place at Arsenal, and a portion of fans will be disappointed to not see West Ham’s Aaron Cresswell who’s been the knocking on the door for a call up, but Hodgson has opted for experience.
Midfielders – Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur), Ross Barkley (Everton), Michael Carrick (Manchester United), Adam Lallana (Liverpool), James Milner (Liverpool), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Arsenal), Jonjo Shelvey (Swansea City), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City)
19-year old Dele Alli gets his first senior team call up having represented the U21’s. He’s been a permanent fixture under Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino and has looked at home in the Premier League.
International level is a huge step up for him, however he’s a bright prospect with a level head and should relish the challenge. Hodgson said: “We have been impressed with what we have seen of Alli, he is an exciting talent.”
Jonjo Shelvey also gets another opportunity and rightly so, he slotted in comfortable in the last round of qualifiers and can find those crucial passes that take the team forward.
Newly pledged Jack Grealish didn’t make the cut this time, however Roy Hodgson has reassured the Villa youngster he made the right choice choosing England over Ireland despite representing them at youth level.
“I am happy he took the bolder choice to play for England. I think he has the talent to be an England player but he has a lot of work to do before that day happens.
Strikers – Danny Ings (Liverpool), Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Jamie Vardy (Leicester City), Theo Walcott (Arsenal)
Liverpool’s Danny Ings also recieves his first call up despite not scoring a Premier League goal as of yet, although there weren’t many options with Danny Welbeck, Charlie Austin and Callum Wilson being injured.
Bournemouth’s top scorer looked poised to be selected, but now faces 6 months out with a knee injury, so Ings gets his first England opportunity.
He won’t be joined by team-mate Daniel Sturridge, who misses out amid injury concerns, with him only just returning after a long lay-off, although many England fans will be disappointed especially as he scored two goals on his return to action.
England face Estonia on the 9th of October and Lituania away on the 12th, as Hodgson has admitted he may experiment with the team even if it costs The Three Lions their 100% winning record in the qualifiers.
England then face two tough friendlies in November starting with Spain, before welcoming the French national side to Wembley.
Do you agree with the England squad? Who would you pick?