England vs Iran World Cup XI odds: Bookies predict team as Alexander-Arnold misses out despite James & Walker absence | The Sun

THE World Cup countdown is firmly on with less than three weeks until England's first game of the tournament.

As Gareth Southgate dots himself at Premier League games across the country, his final squad decision gets increasingly more difficult with players falling in and out of form – and those ghastly injuries.

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As the countdown continues to that opening clash with Iran on November 21, Betfair have looked at the players most likely to start that game.

While many positions and players pick themselves, there will be question marks over much of the defence as their disastrous displays in the Nations League and injury curse at right back.

But there doesn't seem to be any doubt about the man between the sticks as Jordan Pickford (1/9) looks set to keep his place in goal.

He's ahead of Arsenal's Aaron Ramsdale (10/1) and Nick Pope (9/1) who have both been in fantastic form at Arsenal and Newcastle – particularly the latter with the best defensive record in the division.

Then onto a contentious position, with Trent Alexander-Arnold set to MISS OUT on a starting spot for this game, according to Betfair.

That's despite injuries to Reece James and Kyle Walker seemingly ruling them out of their spots.

James has been positive in his messaging as he continues his recovery, while Walker is yet to return after surgery on a groin issue.

Alexander-Arnold is 1/7 to make the squad as a result but looks set to be left out the starting XI for game one.

Betfair have Kieran Trippier (1/12) ahead of him for that right-back spot, with TAA odds-against (11/4) to get the call.

There appears no doubt as to who England will play in the heart of defence with John Stones (2/9) and Harry Maguire (4/9) appearing nailed on to start, despite more criticism for the Manchester United captain.

Eric Dier (1/10) is now the shortest of those at centre back to get the call after a good run in the Spurs team in a back three, with Luke Shaw (2/9) set for left back.

Declan Rice (1/14) and Jude Bellingham (1/9) are nailed on for the midfield spots.

England starting XI odds vs Iran

Betfair odds


  • Jordan Pickford: 1/9
  • Nick Pope: 9/1
  • Aaron Ramsdale: 10/1
  • Dean Henderson: 25/1
  • Sam Johnstone: 100/1


  • Kieran Trippier: 1/12
  • Eric Dier: 1/10
  • John Stones: 2/9
  • Luke Shaw: 2/9
  • Harry Maguire: 4/9
  • Conor Coady: 7/4
  • Kyle Walker: 2/1
  • Ben Chilwell: 11/4
  • Trent Alexander-Arnold: 11/4
  • Ben White 9/2
  • Joe Gomez 5/1
  • Marc Guehi: 8/1
  • Reece James: 9/1
  • Fikayo Tomori: 10/1


  • Declan Rice: 1/14
  • Jude Bellingham: 1/9
  • Mason Mount: 8/15
  • Jordan Henderson: 4/1
  • Kalvin Phillips: 7/1
  • James Ward-Prowse: 10/1
  • James Maddison: 12/1


  • Harry Kane: 1/40
  • Raheem Sterling: 2/9
  • Phil Foden: 1/3
  • Bukayo Saka: 4/5
  • Marcus Rashford: 11/5
  • Jack Grealish: 7/2
  • Jadon Sancho: 5/1
  • Jarrod Bowen: 13/2
  • Ivan Toney: 9/1
  • Tammy Abraham: 10/1

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Mason Mount definitely remains in the hunt though at 8/15 after a really strong start to the season at Chelsea, with Jordan Henderson (4/1), Kalvin Phillips (7/1) and James Ward-Prowse (10/1) amongst those with a lot to prove.

If fit, there's absolutely no doubt that skipper Harry Kane (1/40) will lead the Three Lions' forward line – but who plays alongside him?

Betfair predict Raheem Sterling (2/9) and Phil Foden (1/3) will be the two to occupy the other attacking slots, despite neither offering a whole lot in the latest international break.

Bukayo Saka (4/5) made a huge impact in the last England game and is pushing for that starting berth after his excellent form in a strong Arsenal team.

Jack Grealish (7/2) is the next shortest odds, though a return to form for Marcus Rashford has put him in the hunt ahead of his Manchester City rival, with Rashord 11/5 to start the Three Lions' opener.

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