Cole picks England team to face Wales, it's not good for Chelsea players

Joe Cole would not start any of the three Chelsea players in England’s final World Cup group game versus Wales.

Writing for the Telegraph, Cole did not include the trio of stars hailing from Stamford Bridge in his preferred Three Lions XI for the huge clash on Tuesday.

Gareth Southgate will have a lot on his mind in terms of team selection ahead of the meeting with Rob Pages’ wounded Welsh squad.

Southgate could easily drop over half the 11 that lined-up against the United States on Friday evening.

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England poor warm up for Wales

Rather than demolishing their friends from across the pond like they did to Iran, England limped through to eventually draw the game 0-0.

They looked a completely different proposition from the pack that scored six times on opening night.

Southgate decided to name an unchanged side from the victory over Iran, and for good reason considering how well the group performed.

But perhaps the decision to avoid adding a few fresh faces to the line-up was a poor one.

It was a lacklustre display of huge proportions.

The USA looked the far greater threat and if not for the mighty Harry Maguire, they may well have secured the three points.

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A similar showing against Wales could be detrimental to England’s chances of claiming top spot in the group.

Hence why Cole opted to bring in some new players in favour of those who failed a few days ago.

Cole makes call on Mount and Sterling

Chelsea’s three-time Premier League winner dropped Mason Mount and Raheem Sterling, replacing them with Jack Grealish and Phil Foden.

“I would start with Jack Grealish on the left and one from Bukayo Saka or Raheem Sterling on the opposite side. One of them to begin the game and the other to finish it,” he said.

Sterling and Mount both sparkled in the thumping of Iran, but faded in the follow up fixture.

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They were not the only ones who shrivelled in stature during the draw with the USA, but they are two individuals who have their compatriots breathing down their necks for a starting role against Wales.

"Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produced regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League. Nathaniel is a full-time writer for the Chelsea Chronicle, and was formerly their social media man. His footballing career reached the sparkling heights of winning the Under-13s Bloxham Tournament in 2011."