The English national team has always failed to live up to the billing of international heavyweights. Perhaps burdened by the high expectations placed upon them by football fans and pundits alike. Generations of talent have been promptly engaged in flitters between hazy triumphs and near catastrophe.

However, the rapid emergence of young prospects who seem destined for greatness has provided coach Gareth Southgate with an embarrassment of riches. Excitement is rife within the country’s vast football fan base, with many optimistic that a ‘Golden generation’ has dawned on the southern part of the British isles.

THE SQUAD

Impressive Sheffield United keeper Dean Henderson will be contending for a place in goal with Jordan Pickford and Nick Pope. A certain wake-up call for Pickford whose selection has been censured time and again owing to a culmination of costly errors .

World’s most expensive defender’ Harry Maguire headlines the center-backs department. Joe Gomez, Tyron Mings, Michael Keane, Mason Holgate, James Tarkowski and John Stones will all be looking to partner the towering Manchester United skipper.

The Three Lions have an abundance of quality right-backs to pick from. A quartet of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Kieran Tripper and Kyle Walker are all viable options. On the left side, there are a number of headaches as well with Ben Chilwell, Danny Rose and Luke Shaw all yearning for a starting berth.

The middle of the pack, an area of weakness in previous years, now has an extensive array of talents. Emerging youngsters such as Phil Foden, Declan Rice, James Maddison, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Harry Winks, Mason Mount and Jack Grealish are set challenge long-term stalwarts Jordan Henderson, Dele Alli, Oxlade-Chamberlain and Eric Dier.

A conundrum definitely awaits Gareth Southgate when it comes to picking his attacking force. Captain Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling, Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford, are among the finest young talents in Europe. Hot prospects Mason Greenwood, Bukayo Saka and Callum Hudson-Odoi will all be looking to force their way into the national team.

The success of the English national team will require more than talented individuals. Coach Gareth Southgate must find right system that will suit this crop of players so as to achieve on-field success.

The stage is set, the curtains are rising, the fans are aroused and eagerly awaiting to see whether these generation of players will put their best foot forward and deliver the elusive glory to a nation pregnant with expectations.

Is it finally coming home? Only time will tell.