Thursday, December 7, 2023

Saka, Ramsdale & White make England’s World Cup squad

The FA have confirmed Gareth Southgate’s 26-man England squad for the World Cup and it’s good news for Arsenal trio Bukayo Saka, Aaron Ramsdale and Ben White who’ve all made the cut.

There was little doubt that Saka, England’s player of the year, and Ramsdale would make the plane, however, a debate about White’s inclusion has been raging for weeks. The 25-year-old has been in superb form this season and looks to have benefitted from injuries to other defenders after being on the fringes of the Three Lions’ recently.

It’s not White’s first major tournament, he was also a late selection for the delayed European Championships in 2021.

Asked if he was excited about going to Qatar, White rolled his eyes and said, “What do you think?” He then walked off.

Of the three Gunners, Saka is likely to get the most game time. As things stand, Ramsdale will be fighting with Nick Pope as a backup to Jordan Pickford. White will provide competition at right-back and centre-back.

At the start of the year, Emile Smith Rowe harboured ambitions of a call-up but his 2022 has been wrecked by injuries. He’s currently recovering from groin surgery and should be back in late December.

England’s tournament starts on 21 November against Iran and includes tasty showdowns with Matt Turner’s USA and Wales.

Related articles


Notify of

newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

White is a great choice, such a solid player and great mentality. Crazy that he wasn’t automatic given his recent form.


And good luck to Saka and Ramsdale too, both deserve their place.


The only defenders on that list I’d have ahead of white are TAA, Walker (yuk – but he’s good), and Stones, but two of those play the same position along with Trippier. Do they play Trippier LB, Stones, XXX, TAA as the backline? White should be the 2nd CB, but no doubt they pick the world’s most overrated CB (HM) or the world’s 2nd most overrated CB (Dyer). Or a back 5?


It’s an “i” not a “y”. As in Dire.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

I think our 3rd choice centre back deserves to start at right back, ahead of Trent


Trent can’t defend, so that might be a problem for England


Trippier has been outstanding this season, he should be first choice


Much as it galls me, if fit I’d start walker.

Waitrose Egg for Omelette

Earlier this season …I think after the Fulham game I commented here that Ben could be competing with Trippier and Walker for the RB slot ..I mentioned also I rated Ben ahead of Trent..coz I dont rate Trent defending at all. Later on that day only I realized that I have totally forgotten about Reece James..who imo is actually level with Trippier in terms of attacking and defending. As it turn out now all 4 i mentioned that day would be going to the WC….and it seems that the reason Ive forgotten about RJ was my crystal ball has already… Read more »


I think White would start right CB in a back three only if Walker is not fit.

I doubt Southgate will play him CB in a back four (Stones, Dier or Maguire are going to play there).

Trippier will likely be the starting right full-back on a back four (4-3-3) or wing-back in a back three (3-5-2 or 3-4-3).

Boy Bastin

That’s good news, particularly for White who didn’t always seem to be an automatic selection for the squad. More of our youngsters in with a chance to show what they can do on the biggest international stage of all. Can’t be bad.


Time to get some tips from Tomi? I don’t see a single natural left back in that list!

Woolwich Tiern time

Luke Shaw is the LB. But yes perhaps White deputising for him. The way he has adapted into a new role this season you’d have confidence.

Merlin’s Panini

Saka, of course, played left back for us on numerous occasions in Arteta’s first year. Of course, he’s better further forward but it could give the option, when chasing a game, to put him there and throw on another forward. I also recall Stones playing there a few times before too at club level, if I’m not mistaken.


I didn’t notice him some how. Mentally blocking out the Man u players? You’ll be telling me Maguire made the list next…..


You’re kidding, right?


*[good] natural left back*


Do I have this right, the USA is 2-0 against England in World Cup play?



Not only did they have the affront to break away from us, they also beat us at our national game!!

Damn Yanks!!


As a yank, we love this!

I do no think this will continue this year, but here’s to hoping.


that should be I do “not” think this will continue

A Different George

The famous story is that when the 1950 results were learned, journalists in England assumed it was a typo and England had scored 10, not 0.


If White had missed out it would have been one of the most bizarre decisions I could think of.

One of the first names on the teamsheet on form, let alone the plane

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Yep he should be fighting for that rb spot with Trippier, on this seasons form


TAA would be the RB, no? Walker would probably come in as well if it’s a back 5. Trippier might play LB, he’s better than Shaw, who IMHO is terrible.


Southgate is known to be, how shall I put it, eclectic with his selection.

Emi Rates

Bizarre enough that the useless lump Maguire made the squad.


And will probably start…

El Mintero

Maguire making the squad is a joke and shows up Southgate’s flaws. That and not having White first name down for defenders.


Good luck to our boys. Have a feeling it’s going to be a riot.

Cliff Bastin

Mixed emotions

Mayor McCheese

Me, too. Happy for them to represent England, but, on the other hand, no one should be forced to rub shoulders with Kane and Dier for a month.


Really pleased for Benny Blanco. Saka and Rambo were never in doubt.

Jeremy DG

Im happy for White if he actually has plays as he should. I think we all know the defence will be dier and macguire, shaw and someone else. Good luck with that. He’ll be back home after 5 games max, probably 3-4 having spent a few minutes, if any, on the pitch. This world cup is going to be a shitshow for england, and id rather none of our lads were part of it.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

I just hope for his sake, Saka doesn’t take a penalty

King 14enry

I hope he does. He’s scored pens against a number of big clubs since that miss, and has mostly put that miss to bed. Another converted penalty for England is all that’s missing, and then that miss is nothing but a distant memory.

Boy Bastin

Yes, if it was down to me, I’d give him the chance – what better opportunity to put that piece of history firmly behind him.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

I’d rather he left the penalties exclusively for Arsenal. At least if he misses, Arsenal fans will still show him the same love and appreciation

Teryima Adi

Saka’s cool as a cucumber when it comes to taking spot kicks. Rest assured.


Maintland-niles wants a word


White was always a no brainer. Southgate was just the last to realize that.

Brady’s bunch

Southgate doesn’t appreciate Ben white so will not get the best out of him


Ben White will get the best out of Ben White..

Brady’s bunch

I don’t doubt that for a minute


It would be interesting to see a comparative table of who’s out to the World Cup in the first 11-15 of the top 6 EPL clubs.


White was always a no brainer. Southgate seem to be the last person to realize that. Wish all 3 and the rest of our boys in the WC, first, an injury free outing then relative successes with their national teams!


Chuffed to bits for Benjamin! Well deserved recognition.

Arap Nget

This is truly an excellent Arsenal team. 3 years ago, majority of our starting 11 were not being called up to their national teams. Now, only Gabriel Magalhaes, of World Cup eligible players in the starting 11 has missed out. And even Gabriel’s miss wasn’t deserved. Norway, captained by Odegaard did not qualify for the World Cup. And if I’m not wrong Zinchenko also captains Ukraine. What a turnaround.

Boy Bastin

Makes you think, doesn’t it. I guess it’s down to “getting a grip” on the field and off by following a carefully thought out plan.

Kennington Gunner

Carefully thought out plan? I don’t get the strategy, can someone explain it to me?

Asking for someone else in search of a well thought out plan regarding the World Cup…

Cooked Patino

Coach: who? Does he play for a table-topping Arsenal? Add him.

Cooked Patino

Now that I think about it, we’ve also got Turner from the reserves making it and a couple of others like KT and Hein that would have been there had their team qualified.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Now sign off with 100% effort on Saturday. I don’t want ANY of our world cup boys trying to save themselves for the world cup

Boy Bastin

I think it would only be human nature to have the World Cup at the back of your mind if just selected for your national squad. That said, I’m sure that all our players will be thoroughly professional in their approach at Wolves though.

Martin R

I disagree. The majority of players would always put club before country.

Boy Bastin

But I didn’t say that. I said it would be bound to be at the back of their minds (obviously you can’t “unremember” you’re going to the World Cup ) but that they would be professional and, by implication, get on with the job in hand at Wolves.

Woolwich Tiern time

You seriously think Mikel would let that happen?


He should be telling them all they shouldn’t even be supporting this world cup built on corruption and the blood of immigrant workers. Instead focus on a league built up by oil tycoons and mega exploitative US corporate billionaires, and Murdoch puppeteering world governments.


You forgot the Russian and his blood money.

Teryima Adi

Congrats to our trio of players going to the party in Qatar.

Monkey Nuts

I shall be avoiding the World Cup this time around. It really shouldn’t be happening at all.

El Mintero

Yup. Corrupt fifa bs.

Eric Blair

Only one thing matters to me right now football-wise, 3 points against Wolves.

Then the next thing I’ll give a shit about is a squad free of injury and 3 points against West Ham.


Well said. I think most, if not all of us, are thinking the same. The World Cup was something I couldn’t wait for, as a kid. The anticipation was akin to Christmas – it was magical. When the only televised full game was the FA Cup Final, it was giddy stuff to have game after glorious game being shown live, with the World’s best on display. I was too young to appreciate Mexico 70 and the ESSO coin collection, but by the time West Germany 74 arrived, I was seven and glued to the screen. The Germans had a wonderful… Read more »

Challah Baker Soldier Spy

Club football has long surpassed the international game but there’s a special excitement to me watching World Cups/Euros with family and friends. They’ve never been perfect and the reek of corruption is never far away but this one isan insult to the viewer expecting us to suspend reality regarding such disgusting abuse of tens of thousands of people to make it happen. I’ll be happy for the arsenal lads who do well but I’m not watching any of it and Fifa/Qatar can go fuck themselves.


Quite right too and pleased for our lads.

But Harry fucking Maguire……..?!!!

If Maguire plays for England, then so do I……


Roll on Boxing Day already…..

Share article

Featured on NewsNow

Support Arseblog

Latest posts

Latest Arsecast

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x