Nick Goff’s 23-man England squad prediction
England manager Roy Hodgson reveals his 23-man England squad for Euro 2016 tomorrow, four days later than initially planned to give himself enough time to assess the fitness of some of the players on his shortlist.
Ahead of the announcement, Coral’s head of football, Nick Goff, has given his prediction on the 23 players he thinks Hodgson will go with for the tournament, and those who may just miss out on the competition in France.
Goff rates Joe Hart and Fraser Forster as certainties to be included but believes Hodgson will be debating over whether to hand a spot to Burnley’s Tom Heaton or West Brom’s Ben Foster as the third choice ‘keeper. Heaton is 1/4 with Coral in their market to make the squad, while Foster can be backed at 7/4.
“The third goalkeeper selection may not be as clear cut as the market suggests. Roy knows Foster well from his time at West Brom so he could be a surprise selection ahead of Heaton,” said Goff.
If eight defenders are included, as expected, in the squad, Goff believes Hodgson will go with Nathaniel Clyne, Kyle Walker, Danny Rose, Ryan Bertrand, Chris Smalling, Gary Cahill, John Stones and Phil Jagielka.
“If Luke Shaw had been a little closer to being fit, he’d have gone but the fitness concern will probably mean he will miss out. If there is a shock selection it could be Phil Jones ahead of Jagielka” added Goff.
The midfielders in the squad are likely to have caused Hodgson some restless nights over last couple of weeks but the eight men Goff thinks will get the nod are Dele Alli, Eric Dier, James Milner, Ross Barkley, Jordan Henderson, Jack Wilshere, Adam Lallana and Raheem Sterling.
“If Henderson and Wilshere both prove their fitness, they should both make the squad. That leaves Danny Drinkwater as the unlucky man,” said Goff. “He remains odds-on in the betting due to the fitness concerns of Henderson and Wilshere and it is not beyond realms of possibility that Roy may drop a defender to include the Leicester midfielder.”
Harry Kane, Wayne Rooney, Daniel Sturridge and Jamie Vardy are the four strikers Goff believes are locked in, with Andy Carroll on the reserve list if anything was to happen to those four forwards.
“Carroll offers England something completely different to what they have but he’s just not quite good enough to take over any of the four other strikers,” added Goff. “You’d be leaving out a good player to take someone who’d only ever be an impact sub for 10-15 minutes which is hard to do.”
Nick Goff’s 23-man squad:
Joe Hart, Fraser Forster, Ben Foster, Nathaniel Clyne, Kyle Walker, Danny Rose, Ryan Bertrand, Chris Smalling, Gary Cahill, John Stones, Phil Jagielka, Dele Alli, Eric Dier, James Milner, Ross Barkley, Jordan Henderson, Jack Wilshere, Adam Lallana, Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane, Wayne Rooney, Daniel Sturridge, Jamie Vardy.
Tom Heaton, Phil Jones, Danny Drinkwater, Theo Walcott, Andy Carroll.