REVEALED: Inside the World Cup packages presented to every England player by Prince William, featuring details of every past wearer of their shirt number and an inspirational final message from Gareth Southgate
The 26 players chosen to represent the Three Lions joined up as a group before the tournament on Monday, and were given their squad numbers by manager Gareth Southgate.
Prince William arrived to greet the players on Monday evening and offered some final words of encouragement before giving all the squad members a package which told them the number of players that have previously worn their shirt number, and contained an inspirational message from Southgate.
Harry Maguire posted on Twitter after receiving his package, alongside the caption: ‘Honoured to be presented with the famous no.6 shirt by Prince William.’
Maguire’s package highlighted that only 11 players have previously worn the No 6 on the biggest stage, including World Cup-winning captain Bobby Moore, Southgate, and Sol Campbell.
Southgate’s lengthy message urged Maguire to make history with England in the coming weeks.
‘Wear your shirt with pride and embrace the opportunity to make history,’ Southgate wrote.
Harry Maguire has posted a photo of himself receiving his package from Prince William on Monday evening
The package showed players who had previously worn the No 6 and included a message from Gareth Southgate
England captain Harry Kane also posted on Twitter of himself with Prince William, alongside the caption ‘Pride in the shirt’
SOUTHGATE’S FULL MESSAGE TO MAGUIRE
‘Qatar 2022 will be only the 16th time England have appeared at a World Cup.
‘As we represent over 55 million people, of all ages from every community, you will also remember everyone who helped you to reach this point.
‘Wear your shirt with pride and embrace the opportunity to make history.’
England captain Harry Kane also posted an image of his package being handed to him by Prince William, with the tweet: ‘Pride in the shirt’.
Kane, who won the Golden Boot at the last World Cup in 2018, will follow in the footsteps of England greats such as Bobby Charlton, Alan Shearer and Wayne Rooney by wearing the No 9.
Kyle Walker will arrive in Qatar having not featured for Manchester City since early October after undergoing groin surgery.
However, Southgate has shown faith in him after he starred in Russia four years ago, and was named in UEFA’s team of the tournament at last year’s Euros.
Walker has been given the No 2 jersey, worn by just 13 England players before him at the World Cup.
Fellow right-back Kieran Trippier has been in sparkling form for Newcastle this season, and looks likely to start at wing-back when the tournament gets underway.
Trippier wore the No 12 shirt in Russia in 2018, and scored in the semi-final defeat against Croatia.
He will wear the same number again in Qatar, and posted a photo of himself alongside Prince William on Instagram on Tuesday morning with the caption: ‘Great to see the Prince Of Wales yesterday. I hope we all manage to do you proud over the next 6 weeks.’
Kyle Walker has been given the No 2 shirt after recovering from a groin injury to make Southgate’s squad
Kieran Trippier will wear the No 12 again, after starring in that shirt for England at the 2018 World Cup in Russia
Central defender John Stones will be looking to shine at another World Cup in the No 5 shirt for England
John Stones scored twice at the 2018 World Cup, and could play alongside Walker and Trippier in a back five.
He will take the No 5 shirt in Qatar, and has labelled it a ‘huge honour’ to be going to another major tournament.
‘A huge honour to receive my number 5 shirt for the World Cup from Prince William,’ he wrote on Instagram.