By 90Min
October 04, 2017

When then FA Chairman Greg Dyke claimed in 2013 that England would win the 2022 World Cup everyone still had reason to be just the tiniest bit hopeful.

England's training facility St. George's Park was still shiny and new, and the disastrous tournaments at the World Cup in 2014 and Euros in 2016 had yet to happen.

Without a single win in the World Cup group stages and a demoralising knockout defeat to Iceland two years later in France, not to mention the debacle surrounding Sam Allardyce, the Three Lions have never looked further from ending all those years of hurt that Baddiel and Skinner once sang about.

Lars Baron/GettyImages

However, back when Dyke made the now infamous statement, the Independent made an article entitled: The England Team that will win England the 2022 World Cup in Qatar

Looking back at this list now with the benefit of hindsight, some of the suggestions haven't quite worked out as planned.

Independent writer Simon Rice predicted Jack Butland as the starting goalkeeper, which is far from the most outlandish selection of the bunch.

Stoke City v Southampton - Premier League
Stoke City v Southampton - Premier League

The defence contains Watford midfielder Nathaniel Chalobah at centre back, with the unfortunate caption: "Chalobah will break the mould at Chelsea and actually break through the youth system and into the first team."


Chris Smalling is farmed out to right back, while Ivory Coast international Wilfried Zaha features on the wing alongside a midfield of Jack Wilshire, Ross Barkley and Bournemouth benchwarmer Jordan Ibe. 

Brighton & Hove Albion v Wigan Athletic - Sky Bet Championship
Brighton & Hove Albion v Wigan Athletic - Sky Bet Championship

As for the strike partnership, Rice singled out a 34-year-old Daniel Sturridge, and ambitious choice considering his injury-record and Arsenal reserve-dweller Chuba Akpom.

Wilshire was predicted captain, while the man chosen to lead this team of the damned to glory? One Gary Neville.

Maybe don't put too much faith in the Independent's horoscope either.

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