We picked our 23-man England squads for the Euros - and some big names miss out

Gareth Southgate has some tricky decisions to make (Image: GETTY)

England‘s draw with Belgium was their final match before the Premier League season concludes. That means the next time Gareth Southgate‘s Three Lions take to the pitch, they will be just weeks away from Euro 2024. But who should be on the plane to Germany and who should miss out? The Express Sport team pick their 23-man squads for the Euros as England go in search of their first major trophy since 1966, and Jordan Henderson is among those widely left out…

Sam Smith’s 23-man England squad

Gareth Southgate’s biggest wish will be that his big guns are in good health as the plane departs for Germany. Most of his squad will likely now be pencilled in but there will be a couple of moveable parts.

The race to be the third goalkeeper will depend on the fitness of Nick Pope – with Jack Butland and James Trafford waiting in the wings. Similarly, Jarrad Branthwaite, Lewis Dunk and Ezri Konsa will be ready to pounce if Marc Guehi is ruled out.

The energy of Conor Gallagher or the experience of Jordan Henderson is a toss of a coin. Both players could even find themselves travelling at the expense of an extra attacking player.

Ivan Toney provides much more than Ollie Watkins as a centre forward. Marcus Rashford will hope that his reputation and his CV of good performances for England are enough to just about squeeze himself in after a disappointing campaign with Manchester United.

Anthony Gordon excelled against Brazil and provides a directness that England’s other wingers don’t have. If Southgate had one positive to take from his March injury crisis, then getting a closer look at Gordon and Kobbie Mainoo might be it. Mainoo is perhaps England’s best technical central midfielder and must be on the plane.

Pickford, Ramsdale, Pope

Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Shaw, Chilwell, Stones, Maguire, Guehi, Gomez

Rice, Mainoo, Bellingham, Foden, Gallagher, Maddison

Kane, Saka, Rashford, Toney, Gordon, Grealish

England v Belgium - International Friendly

Man Utd’s Kobbie Mainoo is expected to make the 23-man squad (Image: GETTY)

Jono Spencer’s 23-man England squad

Despite question marks over Gareth Southgate’s ability to get the best out of this exciting squad, England will still head to Germany as one of the favourites alongside France and the hosts.

This squad boasts real experience and exciting talents who can make the difference further going forward, with Southgate having plenty of different options to change the game if required.

I have picked Jack Butland to make the squad ahead of the currently injured Nick Pope as the Rangers goalkeeper has been in fine form in Scotland.

In defence, it almost picks itself but youngster Jarrad Branthwaite should be on the plane too after playing a starring role for Everton, having looked part of his side’s back four for years.

In midfield and attack, things are looking very exciting with the likes of Kobbie Mainoo and Cole Palmer coming through and both deserve to be in the squad on merit. The Chelsea star and Phil Foden can interchange between midfield and attack, providing different options for Bukayo Saka and Marcus Rashford on the wings.

Meanwhile, Ollie Watkins deserves his spot thanks to his Aston Villa heroics, while Ivan Toney provides a Plan B when things aren’t working up top.

Pickford, Ramsdale, Butland

Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Stones, Maguire, Gomez, Branthwaite, Shaw, Chilwell

Rice, Bellingham, Maddison, Mainoo, Gallagher, Palmer, Foden

Kane, Toney, Watkins, Saka, Rashford

Charlie Parker-Turner’s 23-man England squad

Southgate has a thankless task in picking his 23-man squad, but he has to strike a balance in all departments. Aaron Ramsdale fits the bill as being an experienced third-choice keeper behind Pickford and Pope with Sam Johnstone injured, whilst Guehi and Dunk performed well together previously and are a suitable ‘Plan B’ centre-back partnership if Stones and Maguire are rotated.

Taking two injury-prone left-backs feels too great of a risk, meaning that Colwill is selected as he can play in a LCB/LB mould if Alexander-Arnold or Stones are tasked with roaming into midfield and Shaw is rested.

England’s midfield now picks itself given that Mainoo offers more than Henderson and there are leaders elsewhere in the squad. If the latter is so important, a coaching role beckons, perhaps? Toney is selected as the deputy for Kane given that he appears to suit what his teammates need from a No. 9, whilst Palmer and Grealish are versatile rotational options as well.

Rashford offers a completely different, and desirable, skillset out on the left and he has to be in the squad, meaning that Anthony Gordon, unfortunately, misses out.

Pickford, Pope, Ramsdale

Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Maguire, Stones, Guehi, Dunk, Shaw, Colwill

Bellingham, Rice, Gallagher, Mainoo, Maddison, Foden

Saka, Palmer, Kane, Toney, Rashford, Grealish

England v Belgium - International Friendly

Jordan Henderson has 62 England caps but could miss out on this year’s Euros (Image: GETTY)

Alex Turk’s 23-man England squad

Jordan Pickford will start yet another international tournament as England’s No. 1. Aaron Ramsdale and Nick Pope should be his understudies, with Sam Johnstone out through injury.

Kyle Walker and Trent-Alexander would be my two right-backs, making Kieran Trippier a glaring omission. Luke Shaw is clearly Gareth Southgate’s first-choice left-back and should return before the end of the season. Ben Chilwell is the obvious deputy.

John Stones and Harry Maguire feels like an unbreakable centre-back partnership under Southgate. Everton’s Jarrad Branthwaite deserves a call-up amid his brilliant season. Joe Gomez would be unlucky to miss out on current form, but I’ve gone for an extra attacker.

Declan Rice, Jude Bellingham and Kobbie Mainoo should be England’s starting midfield. There is enough experience in this squad to justify chopping Jordan Henderson. Conor Gallagher and Cole Palmer have been two of Chelsea’s best players this season, while James Maddison can add technical class from the bench.

Harry Kane will captain England in Germany, and it’s too difficult to pick between Ivan Toney and Ollie Watkins to provide cover. Both should be on the plane. Bukayo Saka and Phil Foden could make up England’s strongest front three, with Marcus Rashford and Jarrod Bowen adding depth.

Pickford, Ramsdale, Pope

Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Stones, Maguire, Branthwaite, Shaw, Chilwell

Rice, Bellingham, Mainoo, Gallagher, Maddison, Palmer

Saka, Foden, Rashford, Bowen, Kane, Toney, Watkins

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Archie Griggs’ 23-man England squad

Most of the squad picks itself but Marcus Rashford doesn’t get on my plane in spite of his major tournament experience. Cole Palmer and Jarrod Bowen would be stronger options for the Three Lions if their form at club level can be carried over to the international stage.

Ivan Toney should make the squad ahead of Ollie Watkins, with the Brentford striker able to offer something different up top when Harry Kane is not on the pitch. In midfield, it would be silly not to bring Kobbie Mainoo given his impressive rise to prominence and the momentum he is carrying as a result of it.

Jarrad Branthwaite could be the future of England’s defence and should be given a place in the squad after impressing at Everton this season. Joe Gomez would also be a strong shout ahead of Ezri Konsa, with the Liverpool man’s versatility allowing him to cover several positions.

Meanwhile, Nick Pope might just edge out James Trafford for the final goalkeeper spot if he returns to fitness before the end of the campaign.

Pickford, Ramsdale, Pope

Trippier, Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Branthwaite, Stones, Maguire, Gomez, Shaw, Chilwell

Rice, Bellingham, Gallagher, Mainoo, Maddison, Foden

Kane, Toney, Saka, Palmer, Bowen

England v Brazil - International Friendly

Ollie Watkins and Joe Gomez are both outside bets for the Euros (Image: GETTY)

Mikael McKenzie’s 23-man England squad

A third-choice goalkeeper rarely features at a major tournament so it makes more sense to take James Trafford along for the experience. He’ll be a major player for years to come.

Given how reliant England have been on set pieces under Gareth Southgate, I’d take Kieran Trippier over the likes of Joe Gomez or Ezri Konsa. He can also play on the left side of defence.

Marc Guehi is probably England’s third-best centre-half so must make the plane if fit.

The midfield kind of picks itself. Declan Rice, Jude Bellingham plus one other – either Kobbie Mainoo or Phil Foden – who I would definitely play centrally over the left wing.

Against the weaker nations there is no reason why we can’t start Bellingham and Foden in advanced central positions, leaving Rice to shield the back four on his own.

James Maddison is a solid option from the bench. He made the difference with the late assist against Belgium on Tuesday night.

Cole Palmer should make the squad over Connor Gallagher, another player who can change the game in an instance.

Taking both Ollie Watkins and Ivan Toney as back-ups to Harry Kane is well worth it. They each bring completely different attributes.

On current form, Anthony Gordon and Jarrod Bowen should keep Marcus Rashford out of the 23.

Pickford, Ramsdale, Trafford

Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Shaw, Chilwell, Stones, Maguire, Guehi, Trippier

Rice, Mainoo, Bellingham, Foden, Palmer, Maddison

Kane, Saka, Watkins, Bowen, Toney, Gordon

Southgate gives update on Stones injury blow after early England exit

Amos Murphy’s 23-man England squad

Ladies and Gentlemen, the England team that will (probably not) win the European Championships this summer…

All the usual suspects are involved, including a return for Nick Pope, who has been missing for most of the season through injury. Harry Maguire is a yes, as is Jarrad Branthwaite, despite the latter not featuring at all during the recent March internationals. Trent Alexander-Arnold makes the cut, but whether he plays is another question, with Reece James the most notable absentee from the backline.

Jordan Henderson is there, just about (it’s a leadership thing), along with starboy Kobbie Mainoo. Expect to see Conor Gallagher on the plane, as despite Chelsea’s woes this season, he’s been a rare standout. While, if he can remain fit, James Maddison should be a dead-cert too.

But it’s in attack where the major decisions have to be made. Should he finish the season strong with City, Jack Grealish may just about squeeze his way into the 23-man squad ahead of Cole Palmer. Whereas Ivan Toney’s showing against Belgium might be what secures his spot as Harry Kane’s deputy. Harsh on Ollie Watkins, but in that striker position, two’s company, three’s a crowd.

Pickford, Ramsdale, Pope

Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Shaw, Chilwell, Stones, Maguire, Branthwaite

Rice, Mainoo, Bellingham, Foden, Maddison, Gallagher, Henderson

Kane, Saka, Rashford, Toney, Bowen, Grealish

England v Belgium - International Friendly

Ivan Toney is hoping to be England’s No. 2 striker behind Harry Kane (Image: GETTY)

Jack McEachen’s 23-man England squad

There are only a handful of spots left to be decided in Gareth Southgate’s squad and even fewer in the starting XI. The goalkeepers pick themselves after Sam Johnstone’s injury ruled him out of the tournament and if Luke Shaw is fit then he is the only natural left-back necessary on the plane.

Both Kieran Trippier and Levi Colwill have shown their capabilities to cover in that spot, with Ben Chilwell failing to impress on his chances in this month’s international break.

Similarly, another Chelsea man Conor Gallagher was unable to show that he is the answer in midfield with Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham.

Jordan Henderson will likely be given the nod, but the likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Phil Foden or James Maddison can operate there against the majority of international opposition and Kobbie Mainoo may make that spot his own by the end of the campaign.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek gets the nod over Gallagher, Phillips and Henderson after a stellar year in Milan, while Jarrod Bowen is unfortunate to miss out to Bukayo Saka and Cole Palmer. Ivan Toney over Ollie Watkins, because penalties may make the difference.

Pickford, Pope, Ramsdale

Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Stones, Maguire, Branthwaite, Colwill, Shaw, Trippier

Bellingham, Rice, Maddison, Mainoo, Loftus-Cheek

Saka, Palmer, Foden, Kane, Toney, Rashford, Gordon

England v Belgium - International Friendly

Chelsea’s Cole Palmer is pressing to be in the final England squad (Image: GETTY)

Charlie Malam’s 23-man England squad

Bear with me here. This is the squad I would pick – not the squad Gareth Southgate is going to pick. And with that in mind, there are some pretty glaring omissions.

Let’s start with the biggest one – Harry Maguire. He’s been a reliable servant for England but I just think he’s upgradable if you really want to win major trophies. I’d prefer a younger and pacier player like Ezri Konsa, Fikayo Tomori or Levi Colwill as the starter next to John Stones.

I’d take Joe Gomez over Jarrad Branthwaite only due to his ability to play in all three positions across the back. Kieran Trippier is another big-name absentee but he’s been poor in 2024 while Reece James isn’t reliable enough fitness-wise.

Jordan Henderson doesn’t get near my squad but Kobbie Mainoo is straight in. He’s brilliant. Curtis Jones is another I’d be tempted to pick if he can return to peak form post-injury in the coming weeks. It’d be between him and Conor Gallagher.

Leaving Ollie Watkins out feels harsh but the brutal truth is Harry Kane will play almost every minute of the tournament and Ivan Toney is a better stylistic fit to step in when needed. Elsewhere it’s a toss-up between Anthony Gordon and Jack Grealish but for now, the former gets in going off of this season rather than last year. Jarrod Bowen gets the nod over Cole Palmer – but only just.

Pickford, Ramsdale, Pope

Walker, Alexander-Arnold, Stones, Konsa, Tomori, Colwill, Gomez, Shaw

Rice, Mainoo, Bellingham, Gallagher, Foden, Maddison

Kane, Saka, Rashford, Toney, Bowen, Gordon