On June 11th, 2017, England won their biggest international title since 1966.
The Three Lions beat Venezuela 1-0 in the Under-20 World Cup final to win the prestigious tournament for the very first time.
Everton striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored the only goal of the game and in the four-and-a-half years since, he’s become a regular in England’s senior squad.
But what about the rest of the 20 players that featured for Paul Simpson’s side at the U20 World Cup in South Korea?
Well, you can find out the answers to that very question below…
GK – Freddie Woodman (Newcastle Utd)
Woodman, who saved a penalty in the final against Venezuela, is still a Newcastle player and has featured in four Premier League matches in 2021/22 after two impressive seasons on loan at Swansea City. He’s still nowhere close to being the Magpies’ undisputed number one, though, and his future probably lies elsewhere.
GK – Dean Henderson (Man Utd)
After excelling on loan at Sheffield United, many thought Henderson would usurp David de Gea as Manchester United‘s number one. That hasn’t happened and it’s likely the Englishman will leave Old Trafford in due course. He made his senior England debut back in November 2020 against Republic of Ireland.
DEF – Jonjoe Kenny (Everton)
Kenny has really struggled to break into Everton’s first-team on a consistent basis in recent years. He was most recently on loan at Celtic after a temporary spell at Schalke for the 2019/20 season. Like Woodman and Henderson, Kenny may have to switch clubs sooner rather than later for the good of his career.
DEF – Fikayo Tomori (AC Milan)
Tomori failed to cement a place in Chelsea‘s starting XI after decent loan spells at Hull and Derby, but he’s now fulfilling his enormous potential in Italy with Milan. Tomori has been exceptional for the Serie A club and will surely be in Gareth Southgate’s plans for the 2022 World Cup as a result.
DEF – Callum Connolly (Blackpool)
Connolly spent five years as an Everton player, but barely played a game for the Toffees’ senior side. The versatile defender was instead loaned out to Barnsley, Wigan (x2), Ipswich, Bolton, Lincoln and Fleetwood Town (x2), before joining Championship side Blackpool back in the summer after becoming a free agent.
DEF – Jake Clarke-Salter (Coventry, on loan from Chelsea)
A well-known member of Chelsea’s infamous ‘loan army’. As well as Coventry, Clarke-Salter has spent time at Bristol Rovers, Sunderland, Vitesse and Birmingham in recent years. Will he ever break into Chelsea’s first-team? Given that he’s now 24, it looks unlikely…
DEF – Ezri Konsa (Aston Villa)
Konsa played only a few minutes at the 2017 U20 World Cup, but has proven to be one of the big success stories from the squad. The former Charlton man is now a permanent fixture in Aston Villa‘s starting XI following a marvellous 2018/19 campaign at Brentford. It’ll be a huge surprise if he doesn’t receive a call from Southgate in the near future.
DEF – Dael Fry (Middlesbrough)
Fry is one of the few players on this list who’s not been loaned out once or moved clubs since England’s triumph in 2017. The centre-back is an important player for Boro these days and has played a total of 154 games for the club’s first-team at the time of writing.
DEF – Kyle Walker-Peters (Southampton)
Walker-Peters was never really given much of a chance at Tottenham, which is rather baffling when you see how he’s getting on at Southampton. The full-back has been a great signing for the Saints since joining permanently in 2020 and you wouldn’t be surprised if he got a big move in the near future.
MID – Lewis Cook (Bournemouth)
At one point in his career, Cook was tipped for great things and he even played for England’s senior team in a friendly against Italy back in 2018. But injuries have taken their toll on the Bournemouth midfielder and we will likely not see him in an England shirt again as a result – which is a real shame.
MID – Ainsley Maitland-Niles (AS Roma, on loan from Arsenal)
There was a time when Maitland-Niles looked like becoming an Arsenal regular and he even started in the FA Cup final win over Chelsea in 2020. However, the versatile Englishman – who has five senior international caps to his name – quickly fell out of favour with Mikel Arteta and now finds himself at Roma under Jose Mourinho’s rule.
MID – Kieran Dowell (Norwich City)
Like the aforementioned Kenny, Dowell never made it at Everton. But his promising performances on loan at the likes of Nottingham Forest, Sheffield United and Wigan prompted Norwich to sign him permanently in 2020. Dowell has found the going tough in the Premier League this season, though, failing to make a goal contribution in nine appearances.
MID – Josh Onomah (Fulham)
Onomah was very impressive on loan at Aston Villa from Tottenham in 2017/18. He didn’t enjoy the same level of success at Sheffield Wednesday the following campaign, though. Nevertheless, Fulham still saw fit to sign him permanently in 2019 and the midfielder is now a key man at Craven Cottage.
MID – Harry Chapman (Blackburn)
Chapman’s career really has not taken off as of yet. He never made the grade at Middlesbrough and is currently struggling to break into Blackburn’s team. Chapman spent the first half of the 2021/22 season on loan at Burton Albion, but has since returned to Ewood Park after flattering to deceive somewhat at the League One outfit.
FWD – Dominic Calvert-Lewin (Everton)
As we previously mentioned, Calvert-Lewin scored the goal that won England the 2017 U20 World Cup and he’s now recognised as one of the best strikers in the country. Last season, the former Sheffield United man scored 16 goals in 33 Premier League appearances and he also has six goals in just 14 games at senior international level.
FWD – Dominic Solanke (Bournemouth)
The man voted the Best Player at the 2017 U20 World Cup. Solanke was never able to deliver the goods in the Premier League with Liverpool, Chelsea or Bournemouth, but he’s been deadly in the Championship. From his 65 appearances in England’s second-tier, Solanke has 33 goals to his name, with 18 of them coming in just 25 games this season. Not bad, Dominic.
FWD – Ademola Lookman (Leicester)
At times in the Premier League with Everton, Fulham and Leicester, Lookman has performed like a world beater. However, he still lacks consistency, which was highlighted by the former Charlton man’s dismal spell at RB Leipzig. His talent cannot be questioned, though, and all he needs to do is find the perfect footballing home – which could very well be Leicester.
FWD – Adam Armstrong (Southampton)
Armstrong made a real name for himself while out on loan in England’s lower leagues from Newcastle, most notably in goal-filled spells at Coventry and Blackburn. His brilliance at the latter convinced Southampton to sign him as Danny Ings’ replacement, although he’s managed just two goals in 17 Premier League games so far this season.
FWD – Sheyi Ojo (Millwall, on loan from Liverpool)
Ojo has been loaned out eight times by Liverpool since 2015. Wigan, Wolves, Fulham, Reims, Reims II, Rangers, Cardiff and Millwall have all taken on the talented winger. Ojo has played just 13 times for Liverpool and it’s surely inevitable that he leaves Anfield permanently in the next year or so.
FWD – Ovie Ejaria (Reading)
Ejaria’s time at Liverpool was quite similar to Ojo’s. He was loaned out to Sunderland, Rangers and Reading to get some much-needed experience. Ejaria struggled with the first two teams, but came into his own at the latter and the Royals signed him permanently back in 2020.