Harry Kane: Harry Kane is one of the best strikers in football right now, and the English forward is also going to lead his nation at the World Cup. He has had another excellent campaign and has scored 30+ league goals. A tall, powerful, and pacey striker, Kane is a match winner and is not only lethal inside the box, he can pull off few stunners from outside the box. Kane represents England’s direct football approach and has the hunger to be the best. This may not be England’s golden generation, but Kane can make them the most successful of all time.
Kane will need to command his troop and he will have his task cut out as England has the history of dropping their shoulders when things start to slip away. He will also need to vanish the penalty woes as he is one of the finest penalty takers in England.
Raheem Sterling: Sterling has turned around his City career with an impressive 2017/18 campaign. He has been a constant attack on the right-hand side of the attack and has improved his finishing. He has always been able to deliver sumptuous crosses and that will be a key to their attack with Kane on the receiving end. Gareth Southgate is known to grind out results and England fans will accept anything right now. Sterling could be the architect as they have enough power on the flanks and also the pace to beat defenders. Sterling will need to step up and prove his mantle for the national side, else it could be yet another embarrassing exit.
Jordan Henderson: He may have secured the starting spot ahead of Eric Dier if Southgate prefers to play 4-3-3. He has played well with Liverpool this year and was a pillar to their continental exploits. Henderson has time and again faded away after false promises, but he is not the one who would make mistakes. He isn’t Steven Gerrard, but he is a dominating presence in the midfield and needs to open his game and take risks. He does not prefer to play the adventurous passes, which at times slows down the attack. Henderson boasts of a powerful right foot and his calm demeanour may well work wonders for the Three Lions.
Jesse Lingard: He has been mocked by many despite saving United a handful of times this season, and Lingard may not be the most technical player that England has produced, but he knows when to pop up and change the game. He has always been pacey, and the past has taught us that players with great acceleration are a constant threat even if they don’t possess other qualities. He does not deter from taking shots and can play from the middle as well as on his preferred right-hand side as well. Lingard may not start for Southgate with Sterling being preferred to him, but he can turn the game on its head with his instinctive goal scoring attributes.
Gary Cahill: Cahill is an error prone defender but on his days he can be rock solid. He is not comfortable on the ball and tends to give in under pressing football, but his no nonsense defending will be the key if Southgate wants to hold on to a steady lead as England hasn’t been scoring freely under him. He is a vocal presence and a threat from set pieces. He can overthrow strikers with his brute force, but his pace remains to be a tricky area. He will have Stones or Maguire to accompany, and luckily for him both are quick and agile giving him breathing space. He is not one of the most endeared characters, but he will need to step up as the occasion calls for it.