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England manager Gareth Southgate has been given the green light to select 26 players for his World Cup squad following new measures introduced by FIFA.

World football’s governing body has decided to increase the team limit from 23 to 26 players for the first time in the modern era.


This will be welcomed by Southgate, who have previously raised concerns about taking on injured players

The decision was made to potentially reduce the load on the players and minimize the risk of injury.

Southgate and all other managers will have to name their final squads by November 13, eight days before the tournament begins.

A provisional list will be submitted by managers by then, with national associations able to name 55 players on their long list which will then be reduced later.

There will be a limit of 26 people allowed to sit on the benches for matches, including 15 substitutes and 11 team officials, one of whom must be the team doctor.

This news will be welcomed by Southgate, who have previously spoken of the challenges of bringing injured players to Qatar.

This means that he will be allowed to take a potential generic star. It is understood England have been planning for this possibility since the issue was first raised as a possibility earlier in 2022.

Gareth Southgate will take 26 players in England’s World Cup squad and can also take 55 players from the long list following FIFA decision


The move could help the likes of James Maddison, with some suggesting he was unlucky not to feature in England’s Nations League games in June.

The final Premier League matches will be played on November 13, while England’s campaign will begin on the opening day of the tournament as they face Iran.

England next face the United States on November 25 before completing their group with a clash against Wales on November 29.

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