England’s embarrassment of riches: Starting XI of unpicked players including Sancho, White and Pope

Gareth Southgate has gathered his squad together for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers, but is there an equally good starting XI watching from home?

England have all-but qualified for the World Cup, and their place should be confirmed later this month when Gareth Southgate's side play Albania and San Marino.

Unbeaten and top of the group with 20 points, World Cup qualifying has been as straightforward - and dull - as usual for the Three Lions.

A win against Albania on November 12 will be enough for them to book their place in next year's winter tournament, and Gareth Southgate has picked a squad to get the job done.

England's pool of players is so stacked nowadays that regardless of who Southgate picks, there will always be grumblings about those who missed out.

November's 25-man squad is no different, so here at Planet Sport we're taking a look at a starting XI of unpicked players to underline England's embarrassment of riches.

Lining up in a very attacking 4-3-3, here it goes...

Nick Pope

Nick Pope Burnley May21

Was part of the Euro squad in the summer and looked set to maybe even pip Jordan Pickford to a starting spot before an extremely unfortunate injury ruled him out.

But Pope has now returned for Burnley and has resumed his usual consistent levels for the Clarets.

Yes, they sit in the relegation zone as we speak, but it's hardly the fault of Pope who has made 33 saves already in the Premier League, the fifth most in the top flight.

Tino Livramento

Tino Livramento, Southampton, England

As if England didn't have enough right-backs already, Livramento has entered the equation after enjoying a superb debut season with Southampton.

Originally hailing from Chelsea's academy, Livramento made the switch to the south coast this season and has been a standout player for Ralph Hasenhuttl.

Sure, he's got his work cut out to topple the likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold and Reece James, but at just 18 years old he's certainly got time on his side.

Michael Keane

Michael Keane, Everton, England

Perhaps England's worst position for depth is at centre-back, but even then they have the likes of Michael Keane waiting for a call up.

The Everton defender has made 12 appearances for the Three Lions, but has since fallen down the pecking order.

However, he has become a pivotal figure for the Toffees, and isn't a bad back-up option for Southgate should either Harry Maguire or John Stones pick up an injury.

Ben White

Ben White, Arsenal, Premier League, 2021

Perhaps one of the harshest omissions from the November squad was that of Ben White.

His debut season at Arsenal started a bit shakily, but the Gunners have turned a corner under Mikel Arteta and suddenly White is beginning to look a lot more like a £50million defender.

Alongside Aaron Ramsdale, he has revitalised a shaky Gunner backline and suddenly the north London side look tough to beat. An England recall can only be a matter of time.

Aaron Cresswell

Aaron Cresswell, West Ham, England

Both Luke Shaw and Ben Chilwell were selected for the squad, but Shaw in particular can consider himself lucky. The 26-year-old has suffered a huge drop in form since his Euro final goal against Italy.

And he'll need to up his game if he plans to fend off Aaron Cresswell, who has been a consistent performer in West Ham's superb season.

The Hammers find themselves third in the Premier League and have produced wins over LiverpoolManchester United and Manchester City this season.

Going off current form, you'd have to say he's a better option than Shaw. Maybe if Shaw hadn't given his country their best sporting moment for over 60 years in the summer, then it would have been Cresswell wearing the white of England this month.

Conor Gallagher

Conor Gallagher, Crystal Palace, England

Another player who is enjoying a great run of form is Crystal Palace's Conor Gallagher.

The Chelsea loanee showed glimpses of his potential for West Brom last season and under Patrick Vieira he has shone at Selhurst Park.

Gallagher has netted four goals for Palace, and from midfield too. His standout performance against Manchester City alone was deserving of a call-up, but it seems he'll have to wait his turn.

Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips are Southgate's preferred options, and with Jordan Henderson and Jude Bellingham also in the mix, Gallagher will have to prove that he can maintain his form over the course of a season to force his way in.

Jesse Lingard

Jesse Lingard Cristiano Ronaldo Man Utd West Ham Sep21

Jesse Lingard will be rueing his decision to remain at Manchester United after only managing 63 minutes in the Premier League this season.

Nevetheless, he has still scored two Premier League goals in just over an hour on the pitch - some strike rate.

Good enough to start for England in the summer but not good enough to earn a place in the squad for the Euros, he's becoming something of an enigma.

Would clearly benefit from a change of scene in January and can't be ruled out of a push for the Qatar 2022, especially if he can reproduce last season's West Ham form in the second half of the campaign.

James Maddison

James Maddison, Ayoze Perez and Hamza Choudhury return for FA Cup semi-final

It's still surprising that Maddison has only one cap for England. His chances in the summer were ruined by a lack of playing time, but he's reintegrated himself into Brendan Rodgers' plans this season.

In fact, Maddison has appeared in each of the Foxes' Premier League games this season, and recently opened his account in a 2-1 win over Brentford.

It's certainly not the best he's played in his career, but everyone knows the talent the 24-year-old possesses. However, with Jack Grealish ahead of him in the pecking order and still not an England regular, the chances of Maddison starting for the Three Lions any time soon look remote.

Jadon Sancho

Jadon Sancho, Manchester United, West Ham United, Carabao Cup

Jadon Sancho's £72million move to Manchester United has not gone to plan for the 21-year-old.

He had to be world class at Borussia Dortmund just to get a look in, and Southgate wasted no time in kicking him out the moment his form dipped.

It has to be said that Sancho has barely been given a chance at United, with under-pressure boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer preferring the duo of Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford on the flanks.

But it's amazing how quickly everyone forgot his 36 goal contributions last season. He's still world class, just not in form. If he can sort out his Manchester United career, he'll find his way back into Southgate's plans.

Jarrod Bowen

Jarrod Bowen, West Ham, England

From the out-of-form Sancho, to the very in-form Jarrod Bowen. Another West Ham player who has lit up the Premier League this year.

After moving to east London in January last year, Bowen now seems settled at West Ham and is now enjoying his time under David Moyes.

The 24-year-old has played in every Premier League match for the Hammers, and has scored twice as well as registering four assists, including two in their win against Liverpool last weekend.

Alongside Michail Antonio and Pablo Fornals he is helping West Ham look serious candidates for a Champions League spot this season. Should they manage it, then Bowen, who already has an admirer in Jurgen Klopp, may just find another one in Southgate.

Mason Greenwood

Mason Greenwood, Manchester United, Wolves, Premier League

Manchester United have made a poor start to the season, Mason Greenwood has not. Even in an under-performing side, the 20-year-old has scored four goals, ranking him as the club's joint-top scorer.

After making his England debut against Iceland, Greenwood hasn't really recovered from the scandal that left both him and Phil Foden out of the squad.

Southgate insists he has spoken to Greenwood and that the player would prefer to focus on cementing a place at United before looking towards an England spot.

There's no doubting his astronomical potential, though. If he can get it right and continue his growth at Old Trafford, he's one for the future.

READ MORE: Franck Kessie? Milan Skriniar? Lautaro Martinez? Who will Antonio Conte bring to Tottenham?

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