England's World Cup 2022 Standings
England complete Group G, which also includes Belgium, Panama and Tunisia. Below you will find their current tournament standings, updated after every matchday.
England's Odds To Win The World Cup
Despite England's poor overall record at the World Cup, the top sportsbooks have listed England as a decent chance of winning the 2018 tournament. Sports Interaction is offering odds of just +1600 for England to lift the trophy in Russia, behind Germany (+475), Brazil (+500), France (+550), Spain (+700), Argentina (+875) and Belgium (+1200).
While we don't expect the English to go all the way, we are definitely backing them to make it to at least the quarter-finals in 2018. As mentioned above, England will be far too strong for Tunisia and Panama and should qualify for the second round even if they lose to a strong Belgian team. In the Round of 16, they will face one of Poland, Columbia, Senegal or Japan, and we can't see them losing to any of these teams.
It is, therefore, no surprise to see England as marginal favourites to reach the quarter-final stage according to Sports Interaction, who have set a price of -118 for the 1966 winners to do so. If you believe they will be eliminated prior, you can obtain the odds of -111.
If all goes to plan for the top nations, England will face either Germany or Brazil in the quarter-finals (depending on whether they finish first or second in Group G). This is where we expect the English to run into some problems, and is the reason why we are tipping England to be knocked out in the quarters. If you agree with our prediction, +220 is on offer from Sports Interaction for them to be eliminated at the quarter-final stage.
Regardless of your preferred wager, there's no doubt that England is always one of the best teams to watch at the World Cup, particularly as it features some of the Premier League's best players all on the same team. We're certainly looking forward to watching it all unfold!
England's Squad & Key Players
All teams must declare a 30 man squad for the World Cup by the middle of May, while the final 23 man squads don't have to be finalized until the first week of June, just days prior to the tournament start date. We will update you when the team sheets are announced, but first, let's take a look at some of the most important players in the English team and who we think will play a big part in the competition.
Harry Kane (Striker)
If one man alone can bring glory back to England, it is this man. Harry Kane was once dubbed a one-season wonder when he broke through for Tottenham by scoring twenty goals in his first full campaign (2014-15). Since then he has notched up two Golden Boot awards and is well placed to earn a hat trick of top goal-scoring trophies by finishing top of the pile in the 2017-18 season.
Kane has been in red hot form over the last 18 months. At the time of writing, he had scored 49 goals from 52 appearances in England's top-flight over the last season and a half, plus eight from ten in Europe. He is probably one of the best finishes in world football at present, and if provided decent service will cause opponents nightmares at this World Cup.
Raheem Sterling (Winger)
At the start of the 2017-18 season, Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola was considering a swap deal with Arsenal to secure the services of Alexis Sanchez. Whether a legitimate bargaining chip or a methodical ruse, it certainly put Sterling on notice, and he has responded brilliantly. With 14 goals from 21 matches (at the time of writing), Sterling has cemented his place at the best club in England and will be vital for his country as long as he stays in form.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Midfielder)
Looking back at the lineup utilized by Gareth Southgate against Slovenia in October 2017, Raheem Sterling was utilized as a central midfielder and 'the Ox' was deployed in a wide midfield/winger role. Given the start of the season each player has had, it's clear they need to switch positions. Alex has grown into a central midfielder role in Liverpool red, and was outstanding against Manchester City, leading fans to ask Coutinho?
If he can consistently perform in the centre of the park for Liverpool, he will be a lock on that position come June, particularly if the main rival Delle Alli's below-average form continues.
The Coach - Gareth Southgate
It is no surprise to see England looking defensively resolute throughout qualification. The nation is led by one of their better defenders in Gareth Southgate, who made 504 appearances in English football between 1988 and 2006 and earned 57 caps for his country. He commenced management almost immediately after his retirement from playing, taking over at Middlesborough, the final club he turned out for.
After mixed success at the Riverside Stadium, Southgate had a number of years off before re-emerging as the England Under-21 manager, where he achieved qualification for the 2015 European Championship. England's performance was indifferent, however, and they finished last in their group.
At the end of September 2017, Southgate was called up to lead England temporarily due to the Sam Allardyce scandal and was granted a four-year contract in November after securing World Cup qualification.
England's World Cup 2022 Lineup
England's latest international was a friendly match against Brazil on November 14th, 2017. While this lineup featured plenty of changes and caps given to fringe players, it is probably not a true indication of a probable lineup for Russia. The first XI selected against Slovenia on October 5th, 2017 looks likely to form the foundation of the starting lineup, and this is what we have listed below.
Starting Lineup (4-2-3-1)
Joe Hart (West Ham United) - Kyle Walker (Manchester City), John Stones (Manchester City), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Ryan Bertrand (Southampton) - Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur) - Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Liverpool), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Marcus Rashford (Manchester United) - Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur).
Reserves: Daniel Sturridge, Jermain Defoe, Aaron Cresswell, Chris Smalling, Jake Livermore, Kieran Trippier, Jack Butland, Michael Keane, Jesse Lingard, Jordan Pickford, Harry Winks, Harry McGuire
England's World Cup History
England has experienced few highs and plenty of lows during their turbulent World Cup history. Although considered a football powerhouse gave the quality of their domestic competitions, the English simply cannot seem to convert at major tournaments, with the 1966 event the sole exception to a barren trophy cabinet that does not even contain the European Championships cup.
England has been blessed with great players over the years, and arguably their best generation in the late 1990s and early 2000s boasted names like Scholes, Beckham, Gerrard, Lampard, Neville, Cole, Owen, Fowler and Carragher. The fact that the English could not get beyond the quarter-finals with this crop of players astounds many fans of the beautiful game.
England did not feature in the first three tournaments owing to the fact they considered the 'British Home Championship' of more significance. When they finally did participate, at the 1950 event in Brazil, they suffered what is widely regarded as one of the most embarrassing defeats in the nation's history.
After beating Chile 2-0, they faced the USA in Belo Horizonte, and lost 1-0; the British media were so confident in a victory that they assumed a misprint in the telegram and announced the English had won 10-1. England lost the last match to Spain and was eliminated at the group stage.
The English have only been eliminated from the tournament at the group stage on three occasions, and two of those occurred in the 1950s. After reaching the quarters in their 1954 campaign, England went winless through the 1958 World Cup in Sweden, drawing with all three of their opponents in the group stage (the Soviet Union, Brazil and Austria). They had the chance to progress via a playoff against the Soviets, however, lost 1-0.
England failed to better their best finish at a World Cup when they once again lost in the quarter-finals in 1962, although broke through to claim their first and only title in the 1966 event in which they were the hosts. The home side did not concede a goal until the semi-finals, where they finished 2-1 winners over a strong Portugal side, and they finished the tournament with a resounding 4-2 victory over West Germany in the final.
Since the 1966 victory, England has only made it past the quarter-final stage of the World Cup once, occurring in the 1990 tournament in Italy. In what is known as one of the most defensive events ever held, England won just one game in regulation time (1-0 over Egypt in the group stages), and became the first team to play in three consecutive World Cup matches requiring extra time as they were finally knocked out by West Germany in a penalty shootout at the semi-final stage.
England has appeared in fourteen tournaments overall, with their last campaign going down as the worst in the nation's history. Drawn in a difficult group containing Italy and Uruguay, England lost to both before drawing 0-0 with group winners Costa Rica, finishing winless for the second time and scoring just two goals at the 2014 event.
Leading into the 2018 World Cup, England has recorded one of their most successful qualifying campaigns to date, going through undefeated and conceding just three goals during their ten matches. The form doesn't seem to make any difference though, as the English qualified without defeat prior to 2014, and have only lost four qualification matches in the last twenty years.
There is a sense that England will have a great chance to make amends and go deep in Russia. Although they will face a strong Belgian team in Group G, they surely can't fail against Tunisia and Panama, two of the lowest-ranked nations at the tournament. Once into the Round of 16, they will face aside from Group H, another pool that does not boast a great threat to the English. It will be intriguing to follow their progress in 2018.