Teams win trophies because they have great squads.

Having a better starting XI helps, but changing the line-up in games which are winnable without key players is crucial. Giving your best players a rest will keep them fresh for the bigger games.

What about England? Who will Roy Hodgson look to when he needs to rest the likes of Wayne Rooney and Steven Gerrard?

Tom Cleverley will be behind the likes of Michael Carrick and Jack Wilshere as well as Gerrard, but must hope he will make it onto the plane to Brazil.

He needs to work on making an impact on games as a sub because he will rarely start for England. He can change a game with an incisive pass or wicked shot, but has not recently set the Premier League on fire. To even make it to the World Cup, he needs to show Man United that he can perform at the  highest level on a regular basis, and is better than just a substitute.

Raheem Sterling seems to be liked by Roy Hodgson. He will hope an impressive campaign with Liverpool will see him play more for the senior side. A scintillating debut season with the Reds last year saw him called up to the Three Lions.

His pace and trickery can get round any defender, as many found out last season to their embarrassment. He needs to release the ball a bit quicker at times, and can be accused of trying to do too much occasionally.

Another sub-hopeful is Rickie Lambert, who hit the headlines with his debut goal against Scotland.

His style of play will represent a change in tactics for England, if they are chasing a game and looking for a target man, or leading and looking for a man to hold up the ball when it’s played out of defence.

Lambert has a great touch and an eye for goal, ideal for his target man status. He can make
an impact at any moment, which may be called upon as Hodgson does not see him in his first team above Daniel Sturridge or Danny Welbeck.

Phil Jones is a versatile player but seems to have settled as a defender. He simply has not got the credentials to be a midfield player at international level. At centre back or right back though, he seems a little more at home.

Hodgson seems to have picked his back four, with the only dispute being between two world class left-backs in Ashley Cole and Leighton Baines. Jones will quite simply be a reserve if he makes the plane, in case of injury.

All these players will hope to be on the plane to Brazil, but when you look at other national ides, especially those who have won recent World Cups, they have undeniable talent running through the squad. England however may have less impact coming from the bench.

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Topics:
#World Cup
#England Football
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