Pickford is England's No.1

Monday, 4 June, 2018 0comments  |  Jump to last
Clive Rose/Getty Images

Jordan Pickford has been confirmed as Gareth Southgate's first-choice goalkeeper for the World Cup Finals in Russia this month following the release of England's squad numbers for the tournament.

The Everton goalkeeper and the club's Player of the Season, has been listed as number one on the 23-man roster, with Stoke City stopper Jack Butland and Nick Pope of Burnley handed numbers 13 and 23 respectively.

Shirt numbers aren't necessarily a concrete indicator of preference but Southgate admitted after Saturday's friendly against Nigeria in which Pickford played the full 90 minutes that the Toffees' star is likely to be the one in goal when the Three Lions' kick off the group phase of their campaign against Tunisia.

“I was really pleased with what Jordan did,” Southgate said.“ His decision-making on crosses, the punch he made, his distribution and calmness to slide passes into midfield… that was really important to the way we want to play.”

“There was a bit of a statement with the selection of Jordan.”

It means that Pickford, who went straight into Everton's first team last July following his big-money move from Sunderland, will wear the Number 1 jersey for his country at the World Cup despite having earned only three caps to date.

Like many of the 2018 World Cup jerseys (the likes of Nigeria aside!), the home nation has opted for simplicity with the outfield players in all white and the goalkeepers in bright yellow on which Pickford will sport the same number as he does back at Goodison Park.

While four years ago in Brazil, the club was represented by Ross Barkley, Phil Jagielka, and Leighton Baines, Pickford is the only current Everton player in England's squad this time.

Ex-Blue John Stones is in the 23 and has been given the number 5 jersey and former Everton reserves defender Eric Dier has number 4. Harry Kane will wear number 9, Raheem Sterling the number 10 made famous by Gary Lineker at previous World Cups.

The other two representatives from Goodison playing in Russia this summer will be Iceland's Gylfi Sigurdsson and Senegal's Idrissa Gueye. Sigurdsson played 27 minutes of his country's 3-2 defeat to Norway over the weekend, his first action since damaging a knee in Everton's win over Brighton in March.

England squad numbers:

  1. Jordan Pickford (Everton)
  2. Kyle Walker (Manchester City)
  3. Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur)
  4. Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur)
  5. John Stones (Manchester City)
  6. Harry Maguire (Leicester City)
  7. Jesse Lingard (Manchester United)
  8. Jordan Henderson (Liverpool)
  9. Harry Kane (captain, Tottenham Hotspur)
  10. Raheem Sterling (Manchester City)
  11. Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
  12. Kieran Trippier (Tottenham Hotspur)
  13. Jack Butland (Stoke City)
  14. Danny Welbeck (Arsenal)
  15. Gary Cahill (Chelsea)
  16. Phil Jones (Manchester United)
  17. Fabian Delph (Manchester City)
  18. Ashley Young (Manchester United)
  19. Marcus Rashford (Manchester United)
  20. Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur)
  21. Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Chelsea)
  22. Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool)
  23. Nick Pope (Burnley)