Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to start for England against Slovenia in World Cup Qualifier

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will start for England against Slovenia in an attacking quartet with Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford and Harry Kane, according to Sky sources.

Kane will captain the side for Gareth Southgate at Wembley on Thursday, with Sterling stepping into the role left by the suspended Dele Alli, and joining Oxlade-Chamberlain and Rashford in behind the in-form striker Tottenham striker.

Joe Hart is also expected to retain his place in goal despite receiving treatment on an ankle problem this week. He started in the win over Slovakia last month, while Manchester City defender John Stones is understood to be starting alongside Gary Cahill at centre-back.

Stones’ City team-mate Kyle Walker is expected the remain at right-back, as well as Southampton’s Ryan Bertrand on the opposite side, with Tottenham’s Eric Dier and Liverpool’s Jordan Henderson continuing in midfield.

England can secure qualification for next year’s World Cup in Russia with three points against the side with which they drew 0-0 in the reverse fixture a year ago.

Sky sources understand Slovenia will name the same team that beat Lithuania 4-0 in September.

England XI (4-2-3-1): Hart, Walker, Stones, Cahill, Bertrand, Henderson, Dier, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Sterling, Rashford, Kane

Slovenia XI (4-3-1-2): Oblak, Skubic, Mevlja, Cesar, Viller, Kurtic, Rotman, Verbic, Repas, Ilicic, Sparer