BBC pundits pick their England teams

A graphic of Jude Bellingham, Harry Kane and Declan Rice
Image caption,

Who would you pick in England's starting XI?

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It's the big question sweeping the nation.

Who should start for England in their Euro 2024 opener against Serbia on Sunday?

Who replaces Harry Maguire in the heart of the defence? Who partners Declan Rice in the centre of midfield? Should Phil Foden play centrally?

Some of BBC Sport's pundits have picked their England teams.

Rio Ferdinand

Rio Ferdinand: "I would go three at the back when we have the ball, with Kyle Walker, Marc Guehi and Kieran Trippier. In front of that, John Stones and Declan Rice as two pivots, then Jude Bellingham and Phil Foden in front. Then Bukayo Saka right and Anthony Gordon left, with Harry Kane up front.

"When out of possession, Stones will slot back and it becomes a back four, with Walker moving to right-back. Rice will be the defensive midfielder, Bellingham will be the eight and drop a bit with Foden in a three. Then the two wingers and Kane.

"I've gone for Gordon because he gives us the legs to run in behind. Kane comes back for the ball, Saka wants to come for the ball and dribble and Foden would rather come to the ball, so I need someone who can run behind, give us a threat and push Serbia back. Gordon would do that.

"I would make sure Kane stays as high as he can and Bellingham joins. He has been great doing that for Real Madrid - play high and run behind the striker. That team wins the Euros."

Gary Lineker

Gary Lineker on The Rest is Football podcast:, external "Cole Palmer is a wonderful talent. He could play as a number 10. We’ve seen him on the right; we’ve not really seen him on the left. I was tempted to put him on the left-hand side and if you want to just keep rotating you could do that. But I’m going with Anthony Gordon on the left."

Micah Richards

Micah Richards: "It's a balanced team with a mix of experienced players and a few younger, in-form guys. The back four looks solid with a good balance between John Stones and Marc Guehi in front of Jordan Pickford. Declan Rice will protect the back four just in front and dictate the game.

"Then we have the two stars of the team who will be key if England are to do well in Jude Bellingham and Phil Foden. Foden will be the creative outlet, playing central rather than off the left, so constantly involved.

"We have fantastic options at the top end of the pitch and I would have Cole Palmer come into the side after an outstanding first season at Chelsea; England's two-time player of the year Bukayo Saka; and then of course England's captain and all-time leading goalscorer Harry Kane."

Alan Shearer

Alan Shearer on The Rest is Football podcast:, external "I’m playing Phil Foden just in front of Jude Bellingham and Rice. He has to be in that position because he affects the game so much. He wants to get on the ball, he’s brilliant on the ball and he’s got better and better this season. He’s been absolutely magnificent and I really hope he plays in that 10 position rather than on the left-hand side because that’s his best position."

Chris Sutton

Chris Sutton: "I’d play Jude Bellingham slightly deeper so I can have Cole Palmer as my number 10. I really want to get him in there, but that won’t be the starting line-up because everything is pointing towards Gareth Southgate picking Trent Alexander-Arnold in midfield.

"I like what Gareth has done this time with his squad. He has done things a little bit differently to previous tournaments and picked players based on form. I’m a fan of that approach, but now he has to play the players he has picked.

"I get why he would play Trent for his range of passing, but I am still not sure about his discipline defensively. He could go with Conor Gallagher there instead, but I just want him to find a place in the team for Phil Foden and Palmer, so let's hope that happens.

"Serbia have got some talented attackers, but I am expecting England to have too much firepower for them. In my Euro 2024 predictions for the BBC website I’ve gone for them to win, and to start their Euros with a clean sheet."

Wayne Rooney

Wayne Rooney on The Overlap:, external "For form in the league, I'd play Marc Guehi, but I'd be worried. I'm so surprised Branthwaite is not there. Obviously with Trippier being right-footed as well, Branthwaite would have given so much balance.

"He's really good with his feet, went over to Holland on loan before coming back to Everton. He plays balls through the lines; he's a big lad, aggressive. I was shocked. That's probably the biggest shock, that he wasn't in the squad with Harry [Maguire] being left out.

"Gordon is different. He's the one player - Saka does as well but maybe not as much as Gordon - he runs off the ball, he runs in behind, he takes the ball, he'll commit players and he'll hold the width.

"Palmer could play there but his biggest strength is coming inside. Gordon is the one player who will hold the width and make it difficult."

Joe Hart

Joe Hart: "If he is picked, then Marc Guehi will be ready, I have no doubt about that. Gareth Southgate trusts him for a reason.

"The biggest call was who comes into midfield with Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham. I am going to go with Trent Alexander-Arnold in there."

England XI for Euro 2024 final

Select your England XI for their Euro 2024 final against Spain