England’s 26-man World Cup squad to receive text TWO HOURS before announcement with Southgate loyal to Euro 2020 stars

    ENGLAND stars will today receive a magical midday World Cup text.

    The 26-man squad are set to all get early confirmation they are booked on the plane to Qatar ahead of manager Gareth Southgate’s official announcement at 2pm.

    Gareth Southgate is due to name his England squad for the World Cup in Qatar

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    Gareth Southgate is due to name his England squad for the World Cup in QatarCredit: Getty
    Tottenham striker Harry Kane is set to be on the plane to Qatar

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    Tottenham striker Harry Kane is set to be on the plane to QatarCredit: Getty

    Boss Southgate is looking to stick with the players who helped him reach the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup and the final of Euro 2020.

    It means there are unlikely to be many shocks, although Newcastle striker Callum Wilson is hoping for a call-up.

    And that could be bad news for Roma’s Tammy Abraham, who has struggled with his form in Italy this season.

    Ivan Toney and Jarrod Bowen also face heartbreak but Wilson, 30, could be rewarded for his decent record for Newcastle, having scored six times.

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    It would still be a gamble as his fourth and final England cap came three years ago.

    Kyle Walker, who has not played since October 2 after suffering a groin problem for Manchester City, is hopeful he will be among the players heading to the Middle East, along with team-mate Kalvin Phillips who has also been out for most of the season.

    Southgate will be able to wait until Monday, after the weekend games, before giving his final list to Fifa.

    England fly to Qatar on Tuesday with the opener against Iran six days later.

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    Southgate admits that due to squads enlarged from 23 to 26, he can take a fitness gamble with a couple of players.

    He did the same with Harry Maguire and Jordan Henderson ahead of Euro 2020.

    But the Three Lions boss is unlikely to pick many players on standby.
    He said: “I wouldn’t imagine too many would be needed on a standby list, because by that point we should have a pretty clear picture, bar the last game.

    “We’ll work out the day depending on some of the other matches.”
    There has been a call for players such as in-form Leicester midfielder James Maddison to be included.

    Marcus Rashford has not played for England since missing a penalty in the Euro 2020 final but he hopes to get the nod after showing glimpses of his old self for Manchester United.

    Yet Southgate has been frustrated by the amount of times he has withdrawn from England squads.

    He picked Rashford for two World Cup qualifiers against Albania and San Marino in November last year.

    Rashford withdrew with an illness but five days after the 10-0 win at San Marino, he started United’s 4-1 loss at Watford.

    Trent Alexander-Arnold will make it due to the absence of crocked right-back Reece James and left-back Ben Chilwell.

    ENGLAND SQUAD (possible): Pickford, Ramsdale, Pope, Alexander-Arnold, Trippier, Walker, White, Maguire, Stones, Coady, Dier, Shaw, Tomori, Bellingham, Henderson, Rice, Ward-Prowse, Phillips, Foden, Sterling, Mount, Grealish, Saka, Kane, Wilson, Rashford.

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