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Who is the most likely surprise in Southgate’s World Cup squad?

| 15.05.2018

England manager Gareth Southgate will reveal his 23-man squad for this summer’s World Cup on Wednesday.

Some players are a slam-dunk to be included. Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling et al.

Our traders have 26 players priced at odds-on. So it’s clear that there is plenty of competition.

But what about those at Evens or greater? Will the England boss throw in a surprise inclusion or two for Russia?

The Ladbrokes News crew have put their heads together and picked out the men who are most likely to raise a few eyebrows should their name be in the 23…

Jonjo Shelvey – 6/4

Newcastle United’s Jonjo Shelvey already has six England caps to his name, but he hasn’t featured for the Three Lions since 2015.

The midfielder has been under the tutelage of Rafa Benitez since then, however, and he’s flourished.

Few English players boast Shelvey’s vision, accuracy and range of passing capabilities. He hasn’t been in the England set-up yet under Southgate, but his talents could yet see him break through.

Lewis Cook – 12/5

He’s only 21-years-old, but Bournemouth’s Lewis Cook is building a bright future.

Boss Eddie Howe eased his midfield man into action this season, but from December onwards Cook was one of the first names on the team-sheet, belying his relative inexperience.

His form helped the Cherries beat Chelsea and Arsenal, and saw him earn make his international debut in March. Cook may be young, but he’s got big potential.

James Milner – 8/1

Officially, James Milner retired from international football two years ago. But that was under Sam Allardyce.

The Liverpool ace remains a top-quality player in pretty much any position. His versatility could be a key attribute.

He’s set to appear in the Champions League final, and that alone is a testament to the 32-year-old’s ability.

Jamaal Lascelles – 10/1

Like his Newcastle team-mate, centre-half Jamaal Lascelles has thrived under Benitez.

The 24-year-old Magpies skipper has enjoyed an excellent campaign. Only six sides posted a better defensive record than Newcastle this season.

Lascelles has England youth appearances, but has never featured for the first-team. That said, with question marks over many of Southgate’s central defensive options, he could be an option.

Andy Carroll – 16/1

Now this would be a statement from Southgate. Andy Carroll isn’t a prolific scorer, but he is a target man and a complete nightmare for defenders.

What’s more, he has scored in international tournaments before. Just watch his stunning header against Sweden in the 2012 European Championships to see what he can offer.

Harry Kane, Jamie Vardy and Marcus Rashford all have their assets and will surely be on the plane, but none boast an aerial presence like Carroll. Could he make the squad as England’s Plan B?

All Odds and Markets correct as of date of publication



Richard Marsh

Richard loves his sport, especially if it involves the sound of tyres screaming around a race track. He's not fussy though and his '90s Premier League nostalgia and knowledge of team nicknames is tough to match.