The 23 players set to represent the Three Lions at Russia 2018 have been named with Gareth Southgate wisely choosing to quash weeks of potential speculation about who will and won’t be in his squad by confirming his choices long before the FIFA deadline.
Joe Hart is the highest-profile absentee while Trent Alexander-Arnold’s fairytale season is now set to end with a Champions League Final and a World Cup after the 19-year-old Liverpool defender received the call on Wednesday.
Although each individual supporter or pundit may have named a slightly different squad most will have agreed that 20 or so of the players pick themselves.
Pessimists will see that as an indication of the lack of potential talent at Southgate’s disposal but the 2014 squad contained ‘world-class’ players and plenty of international experience only to fail at the first hurdle.
The manager has chosen his path, chosen early and heads to Russia with a clear idea of the type of football and system he wants to play.
Whatever England do they will be doing it Southgate’s way.