Lineker says England should 'write off' World Cup


Liverpool's 19-year-old right back, Trent Alexander-Arnold, received a surprise call-up for England as manager Gareth Southgate put his faith in youth with his final 23-man squad for the upcoming World Cup.

England boss Gareth Southgate should have taken a risk and included Jack Wilshere in his World Cup squad, according to Bournemouth captain Simon Francis.

In goal, the big call was overlooking Hart, who his 75 caps but was farmed out on loan by Manchester City for the past two seasons.

And he says the 26-year-old is a risk England boss Southgate should have taken.

Liverpool teenager Trent Alexander-Arnold has continued a dream breakthrough season with a maiden worldwide call-up ahead of next weekend's Champions League final against Real Madrid.

Manchester City's Kyle Walker, John Stones, Fabien Delph and Raheem Sterling and, Manchester United's Phil Jones, Ashley Young, Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford have all been named in Gareth Southgate's squad of 23 for the World Cup Finals in Russian Federation next month.

Southgate will instead rely on Jordan Henderson, Eric Dier, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Jesse Lingard, and Fabian Delph as his central midfield options. But his dip in form over the past few seasons leading to his loan to Torino then return to the Premier League to play for West Ham left an opening for Butland, Pope, and Pickford.

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As for goalkeepers, Jack Butland of recently relegated Stoke City will fight for the gloves with Everton stopper Jordan Pickford and Burnley's Nick Pope.

Tom Heaton, James Tarkowski, Lewis Cook, Jake Livermore and Adam Lallana have been named on Southgate's standby list.

This is an England squad that lacks quality in some areas.

Alexander-Arnold made his senior debut for Liverpool only 17 months ago.

"All of the guys on standby have been really professional".

England kick off their World Cup campaign against Tunisia on June 18, before facing Panama six days later and top seeds of the group Belgium on June 28. Stoke's Butland is likely to be Southgate's first choice in Russian Federation.

Whether England can win the World Cup remains to be seen and, with a potential quarterfinal vs. either Brazil or Germany, a place in the last eight may well be the limit of Southgate's ambitions.