It’s been a mixed bag for the Three Lions, but with some pressure on, at least after a dismal goalless draw against the USA, England delivered against Wales, outclassing their rivals thanks to Marcus Rashford’s double and Phil Foden’s strike.
Now they take on Senegal, who advanced from Group A despite no Sadio Mane, with an impressive 2-1 win over Ecuador, thanks to Chelsea’s Kalidou Koulibaly, who hit the winner.
Southgate must now decide between Rashford, Foden and Jordan Henderson, or to bring back the likes of Mason Mount, Raheem Sterling and Bukayo Saka in what promises to be a tense affair at Al Bayt Stadium.
Here is everything you need to know about the team:
Group fixtures (all times GMT)
Monday 21 November: England 6-2 Iran
Friday 25 November: England 0-0 USA
Tuesday 29 November: Wales 0-3 England
Goalkeepers: Jordan Pickford (Everton), Aaron Ramsdale (Arsenal), Nick Pope (Newcastle)
Defenders: Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Conor Coady (Everton), Eric Dier (Tottenham), Harry Maguire (Manchester United), Luke Shaw (Manchester United), John Stones (Manchester City), Kieran Trippier (Newcastle), Kyle Walker (Manchester City), Ben White (Arsenal)
Midfielders: Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund), Conor Gallagher (Chelsea), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), Mason Mount (Chelsea), Kalvin Phillips (Manchester City), Declan Rice (West Ham United)
Forwards: Phil Foden (Manchester City), Jack Grealish (Manchester City), Harry Kane (Tottenham), James Maddison (Leicester), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Marcus Rashford (Manchester United), Raheem Sterling (Chelsea), Callum Wilson (Newcastle)
Ones to watch
Star – Harry Kane: England’s captain and main striker, Kane won the golden boot in the last World Cup and is guaranteed his spot in the starting XI. He’s hitting form at the right time scoring close to a goal per game for Tottenham in the Premier League this season. The 29-year-old can also drop deep and pick out passes through the lines for his speedier teammates which will prove useful against strong defences.
Breakout talent – Jude Bellingham: The question was whether Gareth Southgate would give him enough minutes to show off his talent at the World Cup but England’s recent 3-3 draw with Germany changed that. At 2-0 down 19-year-old Bellingham took control of midfield and launched the Three Lions into a counter assault. He broke up play, made runs into the box, slipped in quaint through balls and won a penalty, all but nailing down a spot in the starting XI in the process. Add on that Bellingham is only the third teenager to score in four consecutive Champions League appearances after Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappé and England have got themselves a real talent.
Odds to win the World Cup (taken from Betfair)
England should have enough quality and depth to get past Senegal, but Gareth Southgate’s side will then likely run into France, an entirely different and more challenging test. Les Bleus will probably have too much then, especially with Kylian Mbappe’s impressive form. The last eight likely represents a decent return for the Three Lions, all things considered. Knocked out in the quarter-finals.
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