Tuesday, May 17

England’s centre-forward options – ranked

There was a time when England possessed an absolute embarrassment of riches in the centre-forward department.

Nowadays, the pool of strikers at Gareth Southgate’s disposal certainly isn’t as deep as it once was, but that’s not to say there aren’t some quality operators vying for a place in the Three Lions’ 2022 World Cup squad.

Let’s take a look at who’s out there.

Callum WilsonCallum Wilson

Wilson has been out since December / Stu Forster/GettyImages

Had Wilson been fit for the majority of the season, he’d probably be much higher here.

However, the former Bournemouth striker hasn’t played since December 2021, so getting back into the England squad any time soon will be tough.

Patrick BamfordPatrick Bamford

Bamford has been unlucky with injuries this season / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

Similarly to Wilson, Bamford has dropped out of the England reckoning due to some rotten luck with injuries.

However, after such a fine 2020/21 season which saw him capped at senior international level for the first time, if he can stay fit the Leeds striker has a good shot of getting back into the squad soon.

Danny IngsDanny Ings

Ings and Watkins play together at Villa / Matthew Ashton – AMA/GettyImages

Ings has finally shaken off some of that poor luck he had with injuries earlier in his career, paving out a good career with Southampton before joining Aston Villa.

His lack of goal returns at Villa Park has harmed his prospects, but he’ll be back in once that composure returns to his game.

Ivan ToneyIvan Toney

Toney has enjoyed a good debut season in the Premier League / Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/GettyImages

Only six players have scored more Premier League goals this season than Toney (11), which for a newly-promoted player is excellent going.

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He’s uncapped at international level so far, but a strong end to the season should put him in contention for the Nations League games in the summer.

Ollie WatkinsOllie Watkins

Watkins has impressed at Villa / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

It seems ridiculous to think that just five years ago Watkins was playing in England’s fourth tier.

The Aston Villa man has moved through the divisions with ease and is on track to record double-digit goal returns in consecutive Premier League seasons.

Frank Lampard, Dominic Calvert-LewinFrank Lampard, Dominic Calvert-Lewin

Calvert-Lewin is another England forward who’s struggled with injuries / Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/GettyImages

Calvert-Lewin has been a regular in the Everton starting lineup for some time now, though his lack of goals has always been an issue – not anymore it’s not.

Things clicked for the former Barnsley man in 2020/21 as he bagged 16 Premier League goals. Everton have been rubbish this term and DCL has been absent for most of it through injury.

Tammy AbrahamTammy Abraham

Abraham is enjoying his spell in Serie A / Giuseppe Bellini/GettyImages

Abraham wasn’t getting a fair crack at Chelsea with Thomas Tuchel in charge, so he took a punt and went to Roma – and what a punt it’s been.

He already has 23 goals in all competitions this season and would have played a large role in March’s friendlies had he not pulled out with an injury.

Harry KaneHarry Kane

Kane is England’s best striker / Matthew Ashton – AMA/GettyImages

Now we get to the player so far clear of the rest of his competitors that it’s a little bit ridiculous.

Kane is the current England captain and is already eyeing up Wayne Rooney’s goalscoring record for the Three Lions. He’s only five behind and will want to have that record sewn up by the time he flies to Qatar – fit ankles pending, of course.

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