England face fellow World Cup qualifiers Nigeria at Wembley a week on Saturday in the first of their two warm-up games for Russia 2018
Gareth Southgate's decision to name his squad early means the match won't be surrounded by speculation from an England point of view as to who is and who isn’t going to make the final cut.
That will hopefully allow for the manager to select a side that will play in his favoured formation and be tested by a different kind of opponent to those they have faced during the routine business of World Cup qualification.
Nigeria’s 30-man preliminary party contains a number of familiar names to English supporters, with the likes of Victor Moses and Mikel John Obi named by technical director Gernot Rohr, and the Super Eagles may have more of a focus than in recent years as disputes over logistics and money look to have been addressed prior to the tournament.
They qualified from an African group containing Algeria and Cameroon and will once again face Argentina at the World Cup having played the South Americans in 1994 and also 2002 when both teams were in England’s group and the Super Eagles and the Three Lions played out a goalless draw in Osaka as England progressed through to the knockout stages.