The 2022-23 Nations League gets underway next month, and while that seems important when written down like that, it’s still just a series of international friendlies with very little at stake. But hey, football is football, and it might still quench our thirst for some when it starts: the first four rounds of the group stage will be held June 1 through June 14, and the other two in late September.
England are in Group A3, and that does promise some juicy matchups — as juicy as friendlies can get — with the Three Lions set to take on Germany, Italy, and the group’s whipping boys, poor old Hungary. (Though Dominik Szoboszlai is only getting better at 21 and András Schäfer used to play for my hometown team before heading to the Bundesliga as well in January and doing alright. Plus, according to Turkish media, Attila Szalai has been playing for Chelsea since January, right? But I digress.)
Anyway, there will be plenty of Chelsea players on display in this group, with Jorginho and Emerson for Italy, Timo Werner and Kai Havertz
and Antonio Rüdiger (pause for a sigh) for Germany, and no fewer than seven (7) former Chelsea youth players for England, three of whom are still with the club, even!
Congrats to Mason Mount, Reece James, Conor Gallagher, Tammy Abraham, Champion of Italy Fikayo Tomori, Marc Guéhi, and Declan Rice for not yet getting to go relax on a beach somewhere for a few more weeks. Please don’t get injured!
The 27-man England squad in full:
GOALKEEPERS: Jordan Pickford (Everton), Nick Pope (Burnley), Aaron Ramsdale (Arsenal)
DEFENDERS: Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Conor Coady (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Marc Guéhi (Crystal Palace), Reece James (Chelsea), James Justin (Leicester City) Harry Maguire (Manchester United), John Stones (Manchester City), Fikayo Tomori (AC Milan), Kieran Trippier (Newcastle United), Kyle Walker (Manchester City), Ben White (Arsenal)
MIDFIELDERS: Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund), Conor Gallagher (Crystal Palace, loan from Chelsea), Mason Mount (Chelsea), Kalvin Phillips (Leeds United), Declan Rice (West Ham United), James Ward-Prowse (Southampton)
FORWARDS: Tammy Abraham (AS Roma), Jarrod Bowen (West Ham United), Phil Foden (Manchester City), Jack Grealish (Manchester City), Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City)