England's star-studded alternative XI features Spurs, Man United & Man City stars


England welcome Wales to Wembley Stadium on Thursday evening for a friendly fixture ahead of their UEFA Nations League clashes against Belgium and Denmark.

Gareth Southgate's side go into the clash amid a backdrop of off-field controversy, with Tammy Abraham, Ben Chilwell and Jadon Sancho all set to the miss the game having broken coronavirus rules to attend the former's surprise party last weekend. 

The triple omission follows on from the recent fiasco in Iceland involving Phil Foden and Mason Greenwood, who were both sent home by Southgate after compromising the bio-secure environment.

With Euro 2021 pencilled in for next summer, the England manager may have more than just footballing ability to take into consideration when he draws up his final squad. 

Fortunately for Southgate, though, the pool of English talent is expanding all the time, and that point is aptly illustrated through GiveMeSport's alternative XI.

The starting line-up detailed below consists purely of players who were omitted from the squad to face the upcoming triple header. 

Star-studded, experienced and boasting a combined worth of £278.55m, per Transfermarkt valuations, this XI underlines England's immense strength in depth.

Goalkeeper: Aaron Ramsdale - £11.25m valuation


Ramsdale, 22, starred in a sub-standard Bournemouth side last season and bolstered his international credentials.

As the last line of defence in a struggling top-flight outfit, Ramsdale flourished on his breakthrough season for the Cherries and was rewarded with a move to Sheffield United in the summer.

With Nick Pope, Jordan Pickford and Dean Henderson all currently ahead of him in the pecking order, however, there is plenty of stern competition for the Number One jersey.

Right-back: Aaron Wan-Bissaka - £36m valuation


It turns out you have to be an excellent footballer to earn a place at right-back in England's alternative starting XI.

If you're really special, you might just make it into the actual squad, but you'll have to outperform the generational talent Trent Alexander-Arnold, and two experienced figureheads in Kyle Walker and Kieran Trippier, to stand any chance.

The problem for Southgate is that there is a surplus of outstanding English right-backs; so many, in fact, that it's possible to make a decent alternative XI purely from players in this category.

The list keeps growing season on season - Tariq Lamptey, the jet-heeled newcomer who has caught the eye at Brighton & Hove Albion this season, is the most recent entry.

Wan-Bissaka is unfortunate to have come through during a golden era for English right-backs, but his limitations in the attacking third may deter him from future call-ups.

Centre-back: John Stones - £27m valuation


Russia 2018 feels like a lifetime ago now.

Stones was once a quintessential example of the technically gifted new-age defender, but his stock has taken a dramatic tumble since he starred in England's route to the World Cup semi-final.

Injuries have hampered his career, but persistent rumours concerning his future at the club suggest that Pep Guardiola's belief in the 26-year-old is beginning to wane.

If he can't get back into Manchester City's starting XI this season, which seems unlikely in light of the £65m purchase of Ruben Dias, then he's destined to remain stranded in international exile.

Centre-back: James Tarkowski - £18m valuation


The Burnley enforcer received both of his two England caps while playing for Gareth Southgate, and he will certainly be in contention for the Euro 2021 squad if he stays fit this season.

An able distributor of the ball and accomplished defensive presence, Tarkowski is arguably Burnley's most important player. 

If he was playing for one of the top six clubs he'd likely be a regular fixture in the England squad.

Left-back: Danny Rose - £14.4m valuation


Rose's career at Tottenham Hotspur looks dead and buried. 

The 30-year-old full-back has been omitted from Jose Mourinho's 25-man Europa League squad having fallen further down the pecking order in light of Sergio Reguilon's arrival. 

It looks set to be a bleak ending to a Spurs career spanning more than ten years, and he will need to find a new club to have any chance of reviving his international career.

A former England regular with 29 caps to his name, he's an excellent backup option for Southgate to monitor this season.

Central midfield: Jonjo Shelvey - £13.05m valuation


Remember the clamour to get Shelvey on the plane to Russia? 

The mercurial central midfielder is as erratic as they come: a Pirlo-esque talent with spellbinding qualities one day and a walking four-match ban the next. 

For all his talent, settling into the Newcastle team has been a perennial problem for the 28-year-old, but four consecutive Premier League starts so far this season indicate a corner may have been turned. 

England's best central midfield is far from clear cut and that could play into Shelvey's hands if he cements his place in Steve Bruce's regular XI. 

As always, though, expect the unexpected from the six-cap maverick. 

Central midfield: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain - £25.2m valuation


If Oxlade-Chamberlain can break into Liverpool's starting XI on a regular basis there's no question he'll return to the England fold in the next round of fixtures.

The Ox offers an all-action blend of dynamism, power and technique that no other player in the current England squad can provide. 

Ross Barkley is similar and less complete, but the Liverpool star may find himself in direct competition with a Southgate favourite this season.

With 37 caps to his name and after missing out on the 2018 World Cup due to injury, Oxlade-Chamberlain will be chomping at the bit to get back into the international fold.

Attacking midfield (right): Michail Antonio - £8.55m

Michail Antonio

Antonio has been mooted as a dark horse option for England following his eye-catching run of form since project restart. 

The versatile attacker scored eight goals in nine Premier League games at the end of the 2019/20 season, dragging the Hammers clear of relegation in the process.

And with two goals from four games already this season, his name is now firmly part of the England conversation. 

His ability to play on both wings, as a striker and as a full-back make him an attractive squad option for Southgate. 

Attacking midfield (left) James Maddison - £49.5m valuation


Cue Maddison v Grealish debate.

Villa's scintillating playmaker has been called up to the most recent squad but Maddison missed out having played just 64 minutes of Premier League football this season.

The 23-year-old has only received one cap for the national side so far, but there's no doubt he'll earn plenty more throughout his career. 

Given the extent of attacking options at Southgate's disposal, this will be a massive season for the Foxes' twinkle-toed technician.

Attacking midfield: Dele Alli - £57.6m valuation

Dele Alli

English football's most recent and high-profile victim of the culture of overhyping. 

Alli was once touted as a £100m Galactico but now he's struggling for minutes under Mourinho at Spurs. 

The 24-year-old's last England appearance came in a UEFA Nations League clash against Switzerland back in June 2019, and his long-term absence will surely concern him ahead of Euro 2021. 

Perhaps the biggest problem for Southgate, and also for Mourinho, is working out where Alli slots into their respective systems. 

Centre-forward: Callum Wilson - £18m valuation


The rise of Dominic Calvert-Lewin combined with Danny Ings' resurgence have created a major problem for Callum Wilson. 

Southgate has handed him all four of his England caps but he'll have to enjoy a special season at the spearhead of Newcastle United's attack to stand any chance of adding to that tally. 

But with four goals in four Premier League games already this season, Wilson has already begun to construct his case for Euro 2021 selection. 

Alternative England XI
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