Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.


World Cup 2022 can be ours, says England Under-21 star James Ward-Prowse


The Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse believes England can win the World Cup in 2022, with the current crop of young players able to “reach the stars”.

In a lengthy and wide-ranging speech earlier this week, new Football Association chairman Greg Dyke set the bar very high for the standard by which England need to be measured.

Dyke wants the senior team to reach the final four of Euro 2020, before going on to win the World Cup in Qatar two years later. It is quite a target, but one Ward-Prowse believes is achievable. The 18-year-old on Thursday night made his England Under-21s debut in the 1-0 win over Moldova and believes Gareth Southgate’s team have the ability to help the senior side moving forwards.

“It is exciting,” Ward-Prowse said of Dyke’s comments. “It keeps us working hard on a daily basis to improve ourselves. Hopefully we can push on and I think it is a real possibility. You can see the quality that we have. All right, it was only a 1-0, but we have great quality and I think if we stick together as a team we can reach the stars.”

He added: “It was great to work under the manager. He has a wide range of experience to offer us boys and he’s getting the best out of us.”