Who should be in Gareth Southgate’s England first XI for Euro 2024? | Soccer Saturday

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The Soccer Saturday panel discussed who Gareth Southgate should pick for England’s first game at Euro 2024.

England laboured to an uninspiring 2-0 win over Malta at Wembley on Friday, with only a late Harry Kane goal adding gloss to an otherwise poor performance.

Gareth Southgate’s side had been hit by a series of injuries in the build-up to the European Championship Qualifier dead-rubber but this was a terrible display from a team with ambitions of winning the tournament in Germany next summer.

Qualification may have already been assured and top spot in Group C was sealed but this performance won’t have impressed anyone questioning this team’s credentials of going all the way at the Euros.

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39 thoughts on “Who should be in Gareth Southgate’s England first XI for Euro 2024? | Soccer Saturday

  1. Pickford GK
    Tripper RWB
    Walker CB
    Stones CB
    Shaw LWB
    Rice CDM
    Ward-Prowse CM
    Bellingham CAM
    Saka RF
    Kane CF
    Foden LF

    Pope GK
    Maguire CB
    Alexander-Arnold Def/Mid
    Maddison Mid
    Eze Mid
    Bowen RF
    Grealish LF
    Watkins CF
    Toney CF

  2. How Grealish classifies as a winger is beyond my grasp… He lacks the most essential attribute a winger has: speed and pace. And not just that, but dribbling at speed. He doesn’t have it. He slows everything down and takes 6-7 touches before moving the ball. And when he moves the ball, it’s almost always laterally. Very rarely progressive vertical play or even diagonal. He’s an attacking midfielder at best, but no way on Earth Grealish is a World Class winger, which is why Doku plays ahead of him at club level majority of time. Foden is a starter for Man City and can play anywhere from a Nr 8 or Nr 10 to Left Winger or Right Winger. Trent can play a bit to the right slightly higher than Rice who’s the Pivot. Bellingham higher up slightly left cutting in centrally almost pushing behind Kane as he does for Real Madrid and Saka glued on the right. That leaves Foden on the left where he can also interchange with Bellingham, as Bellingham sometimes likes picking attacks from left playing inverted balls . You can’t play Grealish and leave Foden on the bench. There is no way in hell Southgate can do that if he’s got any little brain left.

  3. 4231

    GK: Pickford
    RB: Walker
    CB: Stones
    CB: Southgate will pick Maguire so it's not even worth talking about tbh
    LB: Shaw
    DM: Rice
    DM: Bellingham
    AM: Foden or Maddison
    RW: Saka
    ST: Kane
    LW: Sterling

    People won't like it but it's what will work on the pitch. The one thing we need to learn from the golden generation is not just cramming the best names on the pitch at the same time. You play the guys that will work together best. I love Grealish as a player. But he likes the ball to feet. Pep uses him to slow down the game at City. Kane's too similar. Kane likes dropping in to recieve the ball and pick out passes. You want him to be flanked by runners who are direct, trying to get in behind. Goalscorers basically. Grealish may be a better player than Sterling. But Sterling's more suited to playing with Kane and more suited to playing tournament football where you want goalscorers on the pitch. Grealish is also the best type of sub to have. Grealish has played his best football for England coming off the bench and making all the fans outraged that he isn't starting. Whilst Sterling has also got hate for starting before and then come up with the goals like in the Euros. He's also upped his game this season. He takes risks with his take ons and passes so his ball retention isn't as high as someone like Grealish. That stuff gets clipped and gets him hate but the fact is he's direct and scores goals. I really think he's our best option off the left.

    Think Foden's best position is in that attacking midfield role. He's been immense there for City since De Bruyne got injured. Maddison was also class there at the start of the season but he's been injured, meanwhile Foden has played. I also think Foden's one of our most naturally gifted players and is more likely to come up with something special when we need him to. Maddison offers more defensively and is better off set pieces though so I'm not fussed if Southgate goes with him. Our depth at AM is so good.

    Bellingham is obviously best as an AM but he's also a really good box to box. Was our best player in the World Cup next to Rice. It's a choice between that or playing Bellingham in the 10, shifting Foden to LW and playing someone like Mainoo next to Rice. I just think the team would function better with Bellingham next to Rice, Foden or Maddison in the 10 and Sterling LW. My opinion. The people acting like Bellingham can't play next to Rice as if we didn't see it at the World Cup or for Dortmund don't know what they're talking about.

    Lastly, I wouldn't be opposed to Palmer coming in for Saka. Saka's been better for longer so he's got the RW locked down for now. But people don't realise just how good Palmer is. I honestly think he's been as good as Foden this season. He's more creative than Saka, he's added goals to his game and he's an excellent penalty taker, which is important in international tournaments.

    Trent next to Rice is an option but it just doesn't give me the confidence Rice-Bellingham does. Trent can run a game but we may not need that with players like Rice, Bellingham, Foden, Palmer, Kane etc. And I just think in a tough game against France, Trent could get bypassed in the midfield. It's a risk and I don't think we need to take it, given everyone we have at our disposal. Defensive solidity is the number 1 priority in international tournaments. Trent's a phenomenal player though. He's 100% on the plane and if Southgate goes with him in midfield I'm not complaining.

  4. Hilarious blaming Ten Hag for Rashford being crap this season… He's given him more then enough chances to repeat last season, and he's been terrible

  5. Play TAA at right midfield with Walker at RB and Trippier at LB. Saka at RW, Jude as the 10 and Kane obviously upfront. It’s between Foden and Grielish for LW and the better footballer is Foden. But there are two problems with him: he’s more RW than LW and he drifts into the central spaces that belong to Bellingham (undoubtedly England’s best baller). So you might have to go with the ‘inferior’ option of Grielish in the starting XI.

    But really it’s squad game. No need to settle on a cast in stone XI and stick with that all tournament. Having the likes of Foden, Maddison, Saka, Grielish, TAA, Stones, Shaw, Trippier, Rice, Henderson, Walker etc all in rotation basically makes England the strongest squad of Euro 2024. It’s really up to Southgate to harness all that rich talent

  6. Southgate will do it , I know he will. He’ll pick Henderson and Maguire, and Sterling , just to be on the safe side ‘ because they’ve never let England down ‘ – are you sure ? How about picking Mainoo , he’s never let England down either. Pick Foden, Maddison, Bellingham, TAA, – forget the dinosaurs and people who couldn’t make it in the Saudi pub team league. Going all out young and exciting, taking risks and playing one-touch progressive football, rather than watching Stones and Maguire pass sideways back and forth 20 times then belt it 30 metres forward , Sam Allardyce -style. England have the talent – if Mr belt and braces , safety-first , risk-averse Southgate will take a chance. I’m not sure he will – eg defending a 3rd minute goal in the Euro Final against a good but ageing Italy team , there for the taking – he sits back and gives them the ball for 90 minutes , and the inevitable takes place . Penalties , where he gives the three youngest blokes on the field , the responsibility. Weak willed, pitiful, timid – I bloody hate it. Remember – 1966 ! I was 12 years old . I’m now 70 and still waiting. Anybody that sings ‘ it’s coming home ‘ before a ball is kicked is a moron. We are good enough , Southgate is not . Just bloody do it – we’ll sing that stupid song all night AFTER it’s won.

  7. Seriously…. Just gonna completely forget that one of the best Right backs in the Premier League right now exists, wjom can also play at CB?
    Ben White goes in over Maguire every day of the week.

    GK. Pickford (No other choice as Ramsdale is now off form)

    RB Walker
    CB White
    CB Stones
    LB Shaw
    CDM Rice
    LCM Bellingham
    RCM Foden
    LW Grealish/Rashford
    ST Kane
    RW Saka.

  8. Southgate needs to be sacked. He has a very boring style of football, he doesn't pick the strongest team and he's a yes man! Why do the corporate media love him? He needs trolling out of football!

  9. Pickford
    (Goal keeper)

    John Stones
    Sven Botman
    (Central defenders)

    Destiny Udogie
    (Left back)

    Trent Alexander-Arnold
    (Right back)

    Jude beligham
    (Attacking mid)

    (Defentive mid)

    James Maddison
    (Central mid)

    (Left wing)

    (Right wing)


  10. I'd take Walker over Trent for this team any day. The attacking group is strong enough. To win a tournament, you need to be strong defensively. Trent is fantastic going forward, but his defensive liability is too high.

  11. My Squad(s):

    Formation: 4-4-2
    Walker(RB) , Stones (CB), Guehi/Gomez (CB), Trippier (LB)
    Saka(RM/RW), Belligham (CAM), Rice(CDM & Vice-Captain), Foden(LM/LW)
    Kane(ST & Captain), Sterling/Rashford (ST)

    When attacking, either push Walker or Trippier in mid. Push Saka, Foden ahead in wings. Making 3-3-4

    Alternate team (Young squad with no one above 30). Formation: 4-3-3. Attacking: 4-2-4. Also, does away with Kane's trophy curse 💀

    James(RB) , Stones (CB), Guehi/Gomez (CB), Tomori (LB)
    Belligham (CAM & Vice-Captain), Rice(CDM & Captain), TAA (CDM)/Maddison (CAM)
    Saka(RW), Foden (CF), Rashford/Gordon(LW)

  12. You want to get the most out of foden?
    Who's in the England squad that can pass like de bruyne? Trent. Is. The. Answer.

    The midfield 3 and front 3 should look like this
    Trent Bellingham

    Saka foden

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