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Ticket Compare > Half of players making debuts in a World Cup year make the final squad – who will be on the plane this time?

Half of players making debuts in a World Cup year make the final squad – who will be on the plane this time?

Half of all players to make their full England debuts in the same season as the FIFA World Cup go on to cement their place in the final squad for the tournament*, reveals research from sports ticket website, Ticket-Compare.

Ticket-Compare explains that 28 players made their England debuts in the same season as the FIFA World Cup, 14 of these made the final tournament squad (full list below**). Of those who were selected in the squad three players did not play during the tournament (Rio Ferdinand, Theo Walcott and Fraser Forster).

Of these 14 players, former England captain Michael Owen is the only player to go on to score in the tournament, scoring two goals in the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France.

Almost one in five of the players who made their debuts never played for England again.

Ticket-Compare adds that those players who made their England debuts ahead of the World Cup finals experienced mixed success in their international playing careers, with five of the 28 players (18%) never playing for England again, including Michael Ricketts, Chris Sutton and Jon Flanagan. Also, over a third of the 28 players go on to receive fewer than 10 international caps.

* Players who made their England debuts on or after 1st August in the season before the last five FIFA World Cup finals, going back to the 1998 FIFA World Cup.
** Players who were selected in the England squad for the FIFA World Cup finals in the same season they made their international debuts:

1998 FIFA World Cup: Rio Ferdinand and Michael Owen
2002 FIFA World Cup: Owen Hargreaves, Trevor Sinclair, Wayne Bridge and Darius Vassell
2004 FIFA World Cup: Theo Walcott and Aaron Lennon
2006 FIFA World Cup: James Milner
2010 FIFA World Cup: Rickie Lambert, Ross Barkley, Fraser Forster, Adam Lallana and Luke Shaw

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