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Sport5 players who could receive their first England caps against Bulgaria or Kosovo

12:45  29 august  2019
12:45  29 august  2019 Source:   fourfourtwo.com

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The first international break is only around the corner – and these are the men who could benefit from bright starts to the season. Fresh from another disappointing semi-final exit against Holland in the UEFA Nations League, England continue their Euro 2020 qualification campaign with a pair of

At Leicester, his experiences against the south Londoners were miserable – not helped by the Foxes being incapable of putting in anything close to an acceptable performance against Palace over the Latest Features. 5 players who could receive their first England caps against Bulgaria or Kosovo .

5 players who could receive their first England caps against Bulgaria or Kosovo © AP (AP Photo/Luis Vieira)

Fresh from another disappointing semi-final exit against Holland in the UEFA Nations League, England continue their Euro 2020 qualification campaign with a pair of games against Bulgaria and Kosovo.

Gareth Southgate will name his squad for the fixtures at 2pm on Thursday, as he attempts to defend his 100% record in qualifying so far.

Football moves quickly, however, and a number of young players have made strong cases to be included since he named his last squad. Here’s five of them...

James Maddison (Leicester)

5 players who could receive their first England caps against Bulgaria or Kosovo © Getty (Photo by Richard Sellers/PA Images via Getty Images)

Despite a terrific debut campaign in the Premier League for Leicester, Maddison is yet to win a Three Lions cap. The 22-year-old created more chances than anyone else in the top flight last season, ending with seven assists and the Foxes’ Young Player of the Season award.

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He’s continued his fine form in the current campaign under Brendan Rodgers too, having already earned a man-of-the-match award against Chelsea and grabbed two assists from three games.

For Maddison to be accommodated in the starting lineup, one of either Dele Alli or Jesse Lingard would have to drop out from England’s most recent starting XI. Both scenarios seem fairly likely: Alli has only just returned to training following a hamstring injury, while Lingard is still without a goal or an assist in the current calendar year.

Maddison was called up for Nations League matches against Spain and Croatia, but he didn’t play a part in either game. Southgate can surely ignore him no longer.

Mason Mount (Chelsea)

5 players who could receive their first England caps against Bulgaria or Kosovo © Getty (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

The elegant attacking midfielder is testament to the new crop of technically gifted English players to have emerged in recent years. After impressing on loan at Derby last season as the Rams fell just short in the Championship play-off final, Mount returned to Stamford Bridge in the summer. The 20-year-old was soon joined by his former manager Frank Lampard, after the club legend was appointed as Blues boss in July.

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In this slideshow, we pick out 12 players who we expect to receive their first England caps before the end of 2018 Grealish reminded everyone what he can do last season, however, and if he reproduces his dazzling 2017/18 form this term, a first England cap won’t be too far around the corner.

The pair had a strong working relationship during their time at Pride Park, and that has carried over into 2019/20. Lampard has entrusted Mount with starts in each of Chelsea’s Premier League fixtures so far this season, and his faith rewarded with goals against Leicester and Norwich.

Continued performances like this should be enough for the youngster to force his way into England contention. Like Maddison, he was called up for those Spain and Croatia games but didn’t make it onto the pitch.

Joe Willock (Arsenal)

5 players who could receive their first England caps against Bulgaria or Kosovo © Getty (Photo by Mark Leech/Offside/Offside via Getty Images)

A wildcard option, but another 20-year-old who must be in Southgate’s thoughts. Willock’s place as a starter at Arsenal came as a surprise; he’s already improved his tally of  Premier League games from last season.

He’s impressed, too. Unai Emery singled him out for praise after Arsenal’s defeat to Liverpool on Sunday, which came after the youngster had earned his manager’s adulation for a gutsy recovery tackle on Jonjo Shelvey against Newcastle.

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England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to the west and Scotland to the north. The Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea to the southwest.

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Willock would fit well into Southgate’s favoured three-man midfield, as he possesses the energy and positional awareness required to cover England’s marauding full-backs. It may be too soon for him to start against Bulgaria, but the young Gunner clearly has a future in the national team.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka (Manchester United)

5 players who could receive their first England caps against Bulgaria or Kosovo © Getty (Photo by Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images)

England are blessed with a selection of excellent right-backs. Trent Alexander-Arnold, Kyle Walker and Kieren Trippier are all first-choice full-backs at some of the best clubs in Europe, and more (see Max Aarons, Reece James) lie in wait. Wan-Bissaka, however, looks best placed to challenge Alexander-Arnold for a starting spot right now.

The Spider, as he is affectionately known thanks to his arachnid-like legs, completed a move away from boyhood club Crystal Palace in the summer following a brilliant breakout season in which he made 35 appearances. The 21-year-old hasn’t missed a minute in the Premier League for Manchester United since.

Champions League winner Alexander-Arnold is most likely to start against Bulgaria, but Southgate is likely to rotate for Kosovo and Wan-Bissaka – who represented DR Congo’s U20s against England in 2015 – has a fine chance of taking his next step.

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England played their first match at the stadium in 1924 against Scotland and for the next 27 years Wembley was used as a venue for matches against Scotland only. The stadium later became known simply as Wembley Stadium and it became England 's permanent home stadium during the 1950s.

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Ashley Barnes (Burnley)

5 players who could receive their first England caps against Bulgaria or Kosovo © Reuters

Maybe? England are hardly spoilt for choice when it comes to options beyond Harry Kane. Callum Wilson is an excellent Premier League striker who deserves his place in the squad, but Burnley’s Barnes is another strong option.

Four goals have made for a terrific start to 2019/20, building on 12- and nine-goal seasons in 2018/19 and 2017/18 respectively. Barnes is far better than most give him credit for, and is capable of scoring a variety of goals. He’s earned a shot.

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England manager Gareth Southgate fears his players could be subjected to more racial abuse when they face Bulgaria in Sofia. Raheem Sterling was the target of alleged racist abuse from a Bulgaria fan during England's 4-0 win at Wembley on Saturday, while he was also subjected to abuse in another Euro 2020 qualifier against Montenegro earlier this year. Southgate fears the problem could continue when England travel to Sofia on October 14.

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