England World Cup squad LIVE

World Cup squad LIVE: Reaction as Gareth Southgate prepares to name 23-man squad for next month’s tournament

  • England fans have been warned about their conduct ahead of the World Cup 
  • Gareth Southgate set to wield the axe as he announces his 23-man squad  
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England manager Gareth Southgate will make the announcement of his 23-man squad he is taking to Russia for the Fifa World Cup this lunchtime.

Already, players such as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have had to withdraw due to injury, while it is emerged that veteran keeper Joe Hart – who has 75 caps – has been dropped due a collapse in form.

Also receiving an early summer holiday is the injury-prone Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere.

According to FIFA rules, managers had to announce their provisional 30-man squad by May 14 with the final 23 confirmed by June 4.

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  • Darren Boyle

    Host commentator

Gareth Southgate wields his axe ahead of World Cup announcement

On Monday night, Southgate picked up his mobile and tapped the contacts button, before scrolling down to Joe Hart’s name to tell him he was not going to Russia. 

Later he did the same for Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere. 

But in the phone call, Southgate explained to England’s current most-capped player that his services are not required. While Southgate is in charge, Hart looks firmly in the international wilderness.

Peruvian striker Paolo Guerrero has blamed ‘contaminated tea’ after he was banned for having a metabolite of cocaine in his system following a World Cup Qualifier in October. 

Guerrero, 34, was set to captain Peru who made it to the World Cup for the first time since 1982. 

He said: ‘I am not going to the World Cup, that is too big of a hit. I have to see which actions to take with my lawyers.’ 

Guerrero’s six-month ban for the positive test ended earlier this month, but it was later extended to January – ruling him out of the World Cup. 

Football fans heading to Russia for the World Cup should be wary of hotel and public Wi-Fi and keep their devices on them at all times, cyber security chiefs warned.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), a branch of Government listening post GCHQ, said fans should think carefully about how to secure their personal data and issued advice.

Fears over the Russian government’s internet capabilities have been heightened in recent months in the wake of the Salisbury spy poisoning, with the Director General of MI5 Andrew Parker warning on Monday of the Kremlin’s ‘high levels of cyber attacks’.

The Saudi Football Federation have banned referee Fahad al-Mirdasi for life over bribery and urged FIFA to remove him from the pool of referees for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Mirdasi was suspended after admitting offering to take a bribe to influence the outcome of a match, the federation’s disciplinary and ethics committee said late Tuesday.

According to AFP, the 32-year-old is one of Saudi Arabia’s most prominent referees, having earned a FIFA badge in 2011 and officiating at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in 2016 and the Confederations Cup in Russia in 2017. 

Mirdasi confessed to the charges, according to the statement, and it was decided ‘to deprive him from participating in any football activity for life’.

Mirdasi was one of five Arab referees chosen by FIFA to officiate at the 2018 World Cup.

Chelsea midfielder Gary Cahill is praying Gareth Southgate has a place for him on the team jet to Russia. 

Several players such as Joe Hart and Jack Wilshere have already been told by the manager they are not in his plans for the tournament. 

Cahill said: ‘I couldn’t do anything when I was out of the (Chelsea) team,” Cahill said.

‘I’ve just got to perform as best I can, which I’ve tried to do in the last five, six weeks, to put myself back in the frame. If it’s good enough, it’s good enough… if it’s not….

‘My CV’s there, it’s just whether they want to use that or go that way or not. That’s not my decision.

‘If I’m in, I’ll go and give everything I’ve got. If I’m not in, I’ll go away with my family and reflect and rest.’

Cahill joined Chelsea in January 2012, winning the FA Cup and Champions League in his first six months at Stamford Bridge.

Gary Lineker has said that Gareth Southgate should ‘write off’ the idea of winning the World Cup and use Russia’s tournament to blood the youngsters who could genuinely lift the trophy in Qatar, four years from now.

The BBC’s World Cup front man said: ‘We have not, at present, got the world-class players that you need. And you need half your team to be world class to be serious favourites in a competition like this.’

With nothing to lose, it was time to throw in Chelsea’s Ruben Loftus-Cheek, 22, Trent Alexander-Arnold, 19, and even Fulham’s 17-year-old Ryan Sessegnon, Lineker reflected.

‘I would sell this on youngsters,’ Lineker declared at the launch of the Corporation’s World Cup coverage. ‘I would take total pressure off them. I would say: “This is all about experience. We are not going to do particularly well. We are not going to win this World Cup.” I would play lots of these talented young players.’ 

England manager Gareth Southgate said he is excited ahead of the Fifa World Cup which is due to start on June 14. 

The coach, who will name his 23-man squad this lunchtime told ESPN  he has had to make some incredibly difficult decisions. 

He said: ‘For any coach, it is the most difficult conversation because any time you pick a team and leave a player out… having been a player, I know how upsetting that is.

‘Everyone wants to play in a World Cup — everyone wants to play in every match.

‘We have a couple of injuries, unfortunately, which means players definitely can’t go, and the other decisions for us have become clearer as the season has gone on. It’s exciting, now, to look forward to the tournament.’



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