Gareth Southgate’s England lineup leaked ahead of Iran clash

Gareth Southgate is expected to spring some tactical surprises as England begin their World Cup journey against Iran on Monday.

The Three Lions head into the fixture in miserable form, failing to win any of their last six games as England were relegated from the top tier of the UEFA Nations League.

To try and revert the downturn in form, reports in the English media have suggested that Southgate will revert to a 4-3-3 formation rather than his favoured three-at-the-back setup, but the big calls don’t stop there.

The Telegraph claim that Bukayo Saka will start in attack for England on the right side of the forward line ahead of Manchester City’s Phil Foden, with Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling taking their usual spots central and out on the left.

Southgate is then expected to opt for Declan Rice, Jude Bellingham and Mason Mount in a midfield trio.

At the back, it is Manchester United centre-back Harry Maguire who is expected to start alongside Luke Shaw, John Stones and Kieran Trippier, despite losing his place at club level under Erik ten Hag.

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On Maguire, Southgate recently told the press: “Loyalty comes from performances over time and knowing that to play for England is a different experience to any other. Players have to be able to handle that.

“The ones that have been here longer, we know they can do that. You also have to balance that with what the alternatives are.”

England (4-3-3): Pickford; Trippier, Stones, Maguire, Shaw; Rice, Bellingham, Mount; Saka, Kane, Foden.

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