UNILAD Football’s Alternative England Team
Roy Hodgson is set to name a starting XI to face Germany tonight, but there were a few names omitted from his squad that we3 expected to be given a chance.
The new kit was also launched, and that caused as much debate as who made it into Roy’s latest squad.
Mark Noble, Aaron Cresswell and Marc Albrighton all missed out, with Hodgson picking a strong looking squad that seems to be a good indication of the final 23 he’s picking for France this summer.
Daniel Sturridge made it into the selection despite being made of glass, while chat shit get banged legend Jamie Vardy also kept his place.
With the Euros less than three months away, we thought we’d make an England team featuring none of the players that made it into today’s squad, and it’s pretty decent:
Goalkeeper: Tom Heaton
Despite playing in the Championship, Burnley goalie Heaton is more than good enough to be in and around the England senior picture.
The 29-year-old has been in England squads before, but finds himself a long way behind Joe Hart, Fraser Forster and Jack Butland in the pecking order.
His main competition would be West Brom’s Ben Foster, but the Baggies’ stopper has never looked good enough to put any serious pressure on one of England’s top goalies.
Right Back: Kieran Trippier
Continuing the Burnley theme, the former Clarets man is our right back.
Now at Tottenham Hotspur, the 25-year-old is in a battle with team mate Kyle Walker and Liverpool’s Nathaniel Clyne for the England slot.
In fairness to Roy, none of the three are a clear first choice, so Trippier can consider himself unlucky to be left out of the squad.
He’s certainly good enough to be in the main squad, given the ease at which he adapted to the Premier League when he was with Burnley last season.
Trippier is comfortably ahead of Glen Johnson though, so he’s not far off the squad.
Centre Back: Scott Dann
Since arriving at Crystal Palace from Blackburn Rovers, Dann has been one of the Premier League’s most underrated defenders.
People have long pushed the 6’5″ 29-year-old for a call-up to the England squad, but Roy Hodgson has ignored the shouts.
Dann did win two caps for England’s under 21’s back in 2008, but time is running out for him to represent the full international team.
By the time the World Cup comes around in 2018, Dann will be 31, meaning his England career looks unlikely to ever take off.
We’d have him in this team though, mainly because he’s miles better than Phil Jones.
Centre Back: Ryan Shawcross
Despite being overly aggressive and someone who prefers to wrestle strikers to the floor than tackle them fairly, Shawcross makes it into our XI.
He’d bring a bit of Englishness to our team, with his marine style haircut and take-no-shit philosophy.
He might end up getting nipped past by a quick striker, but he’d soon smash him into the grass and play on like nothing has happened.
Left Back: Aaron Cresswell
Many expected West Ham’s left back to be included in Hodgson’s latest squad, given his impressive season in the Hammers’ team.
He seems to be ahead of Kieran Gibbs, and with Leighton Baines and Luke Shaw both injured, now would have been the time Cresswell made the squad.
Other than Dimitri Payet, Cresswell has been one of West Ham’s standout players this year and deserves his shot.
But with players returning to the mix towards the end of the season, Cresswell looks set to miss out.
We’d have him in our team though, thanks to his ability to cross a ball and deliver a wicked set piece.
Defensive Midfield: Mark Noble
Arguably the most surprising omission, Noble has long been one of the best English players never to receive a senior call up.
Even Leon Osman got one, for fuck’s sake.
Noble has been excellent for West Ham this season, supporting Payet from deep in midfield and chipping in with a few decent goals along the way.
He’s a shoo in for our team though, given his all round ability and leadership qualities.
Defensive Midfield: Jonjo Shelvey
Since moving to Newcastle United for regular first team football, Shelvey has lost his place in the England squad.
His spot has gone to Danny Drinkwater, and he faces a fight to get it back.
Shelvey has been good for the Magpies since transferring from Swansea, but Hodgson has axed the 24-year-old from his plans.
All the hype is around Drinkwater at the minute though, but the Newcastle man isn’t exactly a bad backup.
Right Midfield: Aaron Lennon
Since making his loan move to Everton permanent in the summer, Lennon has rediscovered his top form.
He has previously earned 21 England caps but hasn’t been in any squad for some time, having fallen down the pecking order at Tottenham Hotspur before making the move to Goodison Park.
With the likes of Theo Walcott and Raheem Sterling ahead of him in the national reckoning, Lennon is unlikely to make another England squad as Hodgson looks to the younger generation.
He’d be in our alternative team though, no bother.
Left Midfield: Marc Albrighton
One of Leicester City’s less talked about stars, Albrighton has been excellent this season.
Many backed him for a call up for the friendlies, but Hodgson chose his tried and trusted pairing of Walcott and Sterling – what are friendlies for, Roy?
Since being binned off by Aston Villa two years ago, Albrighton has gone from strength to strength with the Foxes, and has been impressive this season.
He’s a certainty for our team.
Attacking Midfield: Michail Antonio
Alright, he might not be an attacking midfielder by trade, but Antonio has produced some brilliant form to be considered for the England squad.
He’s scored four goals in his last six games from midfield, and produced some brilliant celebrations to boot.
The former Nottingham Forest man has stepped up to the Premier League nicely, but Hodgson has overlooked him in favour of the likes of Adam Lallana and James Milner.
The best thing Lallana has done this season is that Nivea advert.
Never mind, Michail, you’d make our team all day long.
Centre Forward: Andy Carroll
The fourth Hammer to make the team, Carroll would lead our line.
The giant striker still remains the best big man in the league when he’s fit, so it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that Roy could still squeeze him on the plane this summer.
His fitness remains an issue, but the ex-Newcastle striker is unplayable on his day and deserves another crack at the international stage.
He’d lead the line in our team, for sure.