Grealish, Kane, Sancho: Ranking Gareth Southgate's England squad from worst to best


England slumped to their 10th defeat of the Gareth Southgate era against Belgium on Sunday.

It's the third time that the Three Lions have come up short against Roberto Martinez's men in as many years, memorably losing in both the groups and third-place play-off at the 2018 World Cup.

In fact, there are no shortage of questions being asked of Southgate's suitability for the job as we creep ever closer to Euro 2020 with the full 24 teams finally confirmed this week.

Southgate's England side

It looks unlikely that the FA would bring down the axe on Southgate with a major tournament on the horizon, but that won't stop England fans from putting his every decision under the microscope.

Besides, we're close enough to UEFA's showpiece event that we can start hypothesising about who will make Southgate's squad - and how different it will be to the contemporary cohort.

During the last international break, we assessed Southgate's arsenal with a classic tiermaker, but now there's nowhere to hide because we're ranking the latest squad from top to bottom.


England squad ranked

Forget players bunching up together in labelled tiers, oh no, we're putting everything on the table by ordering the 22 players listed on the official FA website from, in our opinion, worst to best.

Our criteria focus on each player's current form, their overall quality and in the case of younger options, their potential as an England star. See what you make of our final decision down below:

22. Jude Bellingham

This is no slight on Bellingham, because the lad has a brilliant future ahead of him, but his presence in the England squad is more to do with gaining experience while so many players are injured aside from anything else.


21. Ainsley Maitland-Niles

Again, Maitland-Niles has proven a lot of people wrong at Arsenal this season but is rightfully on the fringes of the squad at the moment and not too many fans will be losing sleep if he misses out on Euro 2020.

20. Jordan Pickford

Pickford is an easy player to bully right now and let me make one thing clear: he's world-class at his best. That being said, on current form, the Everton man is only England's third best goalkeeper, tops.


19. Harry Winks

We're now getting into the sort of mid-tier region where players are incredibly hard to rank and Winks is a very handy squad player for England without ever really setting the world alight.

18. Eric Dier

Cut from a similar cloth is his Tottenham teammate Dier who, after a few years in the wilderness of stagnation, is, to his credit, starting to regain consistency and could easily rise up these England ranks.

Besides, Jose Mourinho has been a vocal supporter of the midfielder - look no further than the 'All or Nothing' documentary - so it's promising to see that the Spurs ace could be back to his best soon.


17. Dean Henderson

Fair play to Henderson because he hasn't put a foot wrong in his breakthrough season at Manchester United so far and for my money, he's a more reliable option in net than Pickford.

16. Bukayo Saka

If this was based on talent and talent alone, the Arsenal starlet would rank much higher in the list, but he's still taking his first steps at the highest level despite a superb performance against Ireland.


15. Michael Keane

I've never been totally convinced with Keane as an England starter, it must be said, though I can't deny his signs of improvement at Everton this season and three goals so far underpin his threat going forward.

14. Tammy Abraham

It's borderline disheartening to see how underrated Abraham has been since getting his chance at Chelsea because lest we forget he was the club's top scorer last season with a superb 18 strikes.


13. Tyrone Mings

There's no two ways about it, Mings has been one of the Premier League's best players so far in 2020/21 and in my humble opinion, could well be deserving of a starting place at Euro 2020.

12. Mason Mount

Mount gets a hard rep from some England fans because of Southgate's apparent infatuation with him, but you only have to listen to how much his teammates rate him to establish the quality he offers.


11. Nick Pope

Pope has had a few wobbles between the sticks this season and while I don't think he's miles clear of his goalkeeping rivals in the England fold, I do think he's the safest bet for the number one jersey.

10. Phil Foden

One of my more controversial choices, admittedly, but Foden is starting to feature and score more and more regularly for Manchester City and is, after all, the greatest talent Pep Guardiola has ever seen.


9. Reece James

It's a poorly kept secret that some members of the England fold rate James' crossing higher than Trent Alexander-Arnold's and his displays in Chelsea's starting XI are increasingly consistent.

8. Dominic Calvert-Lewin

Feel free to accuse me of getting too excited, too quickly, but we're talking about a striker who has already scored two goals in his first five England caps as well as finding the net 11 times for Everton this season.


7. Declan Rice

It's not for no reason that Rice was heavily linked with Chelsea this summer because he's one of the most integral and durable parts of this England engine, dropping a stellar display in last month's Belgium win.

6. Jack Grealish

If we were talking current form and current form alone, Grealish would take the gold medal after a glorious performance in Belgium, but we can't get too ahead of ourselves when he's only four caps deep.


5. Harry Maguire

On his day, whether you like to admit it or not, Maguire is a world-class centre-back and his recent displays against Everton and Ireland should serve as timely reminders as Euro 2020 approaches.

4. Jordan Henderson

Sure, Henderson might be partial to the odd disasterclass, but we're talking about the man who led Liverpool to Premier League and Champions League glory here with the Reds missing him whenever he's absent.


3. Kyle Walker

Walker is playing some of the best football of his career at Manchester City right now and although a tad unfashionable compared to Alexander-Arnold, remains one of the world's best right-backs.

2. Jadon Sancho

We're yet to see the best of Sancho in an England shirt, granted, but with more than 15 goals and 15 assists for Borussia Dortmund last season at just 20 years old, there's no denying he's word-class.


1. Harry Kane

I don't think there's any doubt that, in the absence of Raheem Sterling, Kane is head and shoulders above every other England player as, barring Robert Lewandowski, the world's best number nine.

Although he's drawn a blank for the Three Lions so far this year, it's difficult to see that lasting when he boasts an astonishing record of eight goals and nine assists for Tottenham so far this season.


GIVEMESPORT's Kobe Tong says

Have I just ticked off half the country with one article? Yeh, probably, but take it with a pinch of salt because an opinion is just that and ordering all 22 players proved incredibly tough.

Besides, we're talking about the England team here, it's a big deal and that's exactly why so many fans feel passionately about who Southgate picks in his squads and starting line-ups.

Sadly, the England boss won't be able to please everybody next summer when he picks his final squad for Euro 2020, but at least we've had plenty of games to get an idea of how things might pan out.


All I know is: go easy on Maguire and Henderson, keep your fingers crossed that Sancho cranks into gear, pick Pope over Pickford and oh, for the love of Wembley, start Grealish every time.

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