How England's squad compares to France's for Euro 2024

  • England and France among the favourites for Euro 2024 this summer
  • Les Bleus beat Gareth Southgate's side in the 2022 World Cup quarter-finals
  • Both squads boast some of the world's best players across the pitch
England and France are among the favourites for Euro 2024
England and France are among the favourites for Euro 2024 / Simon M Bruty/GettyImages

As another international tournament drifts into view, England supporters are dreaming of glory once more.

For the men's national team, it has been 58 years of hurt, disappointment and near misses, but Euro 2024 gives fans the chance to believe again. After reaching the final of the tournament three years ago and with a squad chock-a-block with talent, England will have the curse of being among the favourites this summer.

However, as was the case at the 2022 World Cup, France are one of the many sides that stand in England's path. They reached the final of the tournament in Qatar and also boast one of the most talented rosters in world football, including the best player on the planet in Kylian Mbappe.

If the Three Lions are going to bring it home, they may well have to get past a France side stacked with superstars. Here is how the two provisional squads compare...


Jordan Pickford
Jordan Pickford is England's number one / Nigel French/Allstar/GettyImages

While not a universally popular stopper, Gareth Southgate has been very clear when it comes to picking goalkeepers. Everton's Jordan Pickford has always been his number one choice regardless of club form, with the likes of Aaron Ramsdale and Nick Pope being given infrequent starts in the past.

Pickford will undoubtedly start this summer's tournament in Germany bar any late injury issues and the same can be said of France's Mike Maignan. The Milan stopper has established himself as the nation's first-choice goalkeeper since Hugo Lloris' retirement and has been a revelation in Serie A since his switch from Lille in 2021.

When it comes to goalkeepers, both nations have strong options, but even the most patriotic England fan would have to confess Maignan is the better choice.


William Saliba
William Saliba is among the world's best centre-backs / Jonathan Moscrop/GettyImages

If there is one weakness in England's squad, it's almost certainly at centre-back. John Stones is the standout candidate in that position but has struggled for minutes with Manchester City in the latter stages of the campaign, while the much-maligned Harry Maguire is also a firm favourite of Southagte's.

Marc Guehi, Lewis Dunk and Ezri Konsa have some England experience, albeit not loads, while Jarrad Branthwaite and Jarell Quansah have both made the 33-man provisional squad - only 26 can travel to Germany - despite not making their senior debuts yet.

France have stronger options in the heart of their defence, including the mightily impressive William Saliba. He was a major factor in Arsenal's defence last season - the most stubborn in the Premier League - and could well partner Liverpool's Ibrahima Konate at the back.

At full-back, things are more even between the two nations. England have just the one orthodox left-back in Luke Shaw - although injury may keep him out of the tournament, with Joe Gomez and Kieran Trippier having been deployed in that role for club and country respectively. France will be able to call on Champions League finalist Ferland Mendy or the more offensive-minded Milan star Theo Hernandez.

On the right-hand side, England have greater depth. Kyle Walker is the leading candidate and is almost guaranteed to start in that role over Gomez and Trippier. For France, Marseille's Jonathan Clauss has been included in the provisional squad, while Pavard can also feature at right-back. Jules Kounde is perhaps the favourite for the position though having played in the role throughout the season at Barcelona.


Declan Rice
Declan Rice has been inspired this season / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

In England's 33-man preliminary squad, only six players have been listed as midfielders. That includes Declan Rice, who is a must-start in a two-man base, with Trent Alexander-Arnold, Conor Gallagher and impressive youngster Kobbie Mainoo also included. All four should travel this summer, but Adam Wharton and Curtis Jones may not make the plane.

However, Southgate's squad also boasts plenty of attacking midfielders who are actually listed as forwards, with Jude Bellingham, James Maddison, Cole Palmer and Phil Foden all capable of playing off a central striker. England have plenty of options in the number ten role, but they lack some depth in the number eight positions.

That deeper midfield position is where France boast some of their best players. The Real Madrid duo of Aurelien Tchuoameni and Eduardo Camavinga are brilliant options, while Atletico Madrid star Antoine Griezmann showcased his quality in midfield during the 2022 World Cup. Adrien Rabiot, Youssouf Fofana and young Warren Zaire-Emery have all made the cut so far, with N'Golo Kante, now at Al Ittihad, also involved.


France v Chile - International Friendly
Kylian Mbappe is the arguably the world's best / Christian Liewig - Corbis/GettyImages

This is the area of the pitch in which England have stronger options than France. In the number nine position, Southgate will be starting captain Harry Kane, who has been prolific yet again this season at Bayern Munich, while the in-form Ollie Watkins is a great back-up option. Ivan Toney is included in the provisional squad but may be dropped.

Meanwhile, France may have to rely once more on 37-year-old Olivier Giroud. The veteran, who is moving to Major League Soccer this summer, has plenty of experience but isn't capable of matching Kane in many departments. Randal Kolo Muani has had an indifferent season with Paris Saint-Germain and isn't likely to start at the tournament, but Marcus Thuram is knocking on the door after a fantastic season with Inter.

England also have fantastic options out wide, with the likes of Foden, Palmer, Bukayo Saka and Anthony Gordon among the fleet-footed wingers available to Southgate. Jarrod Bowen, Eberechi Eze and Jack Grealish are also in the 33-man squad but may not make the final cut.

While France do have Mbappe, the best player heading to Euro 2024 this summer, their other wide options of Bradley Barcola, Ousmane Dembele and Kingsley Coman aren't as inspiring.

England and France provisional Euro 2024 squads





Jordan Pickford (Everton), Dean Henderson (Crystal Palace), Aaron Ramsdale (Arsenal), James Trafford (Burnley)

Alphonse Areola (West Ham), Mike Maignan (AC Milan), Brice Samba (Lens)


Jarrad Branthwaite (Everton), Lewis Dunk (Brighton), Joe Gomez (Liverpool), Marc Guehi (Crystal Palace), Ezri Konsa (Aston Villa), Harry Maguire (Manchester United), Jarell Quansah (Liverpool), Luke Shaw (Man Utd), John Stones (Man City), Kieran Trippier (Newcastle), Kyle Walker (Man City)

Jonathan Clauss (Marseille), Theo Hernandez (AC Milan), Ibrahima Konate (Liverpool), Jules Kounde (Barcelona), Ferland Mendy (Real Madrid), Benjamin Pavard (Inter Milan), William Saliba (Arsenal), Dayot Upamecano (Bayern Munich)


Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Conor Gallagher (Chelsea), Curtis Jones (Liverpool), Kobbie Mainoo (Man Utd), Declan Rice (Arsenal), Adam Wharton (Crystal Palace)

Eduardo Camavinga (Real Madrid), Youssouf Fofana (Monaco), Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid), N'Golo Kante (Al-Ittihad), Adrien Rabiot (Juventus ), Aurlien Tchouameni (Real Madrid), Warren Zaire-Emery (PSG)


Jude Bellingham, (Real Madrid), Jarrod Bowen (West Ham), Eberechi Eze (Crystal Palace), Phil Foden (Man City), Jack Grealish (Man City), Anthony Gordon (Newcastle), Harry Kane (Bayern Munich), James Maddison (Tottenham), Cole Palmer (Chelsea), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Ivan Toney (Brentford), Ollie Watkins (Aston Villa)

Bradley Barcola (PSG), Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich), Ousmane Dembele (PSG), Olivier Giroud (AC Milan), Randal Kolo Muani (PSG), Kylian Mbappe (PSG), Marcus Thuram (Inter Milan)