Will Wayne Rooney start, and if so where? Will Roy Hodgson name all three strikers – Rooney, Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy – in the staring XI again, or will he go with a more conventional formation, playing to the strengths of Dele Alli and bringing in the pace of Raheem Sterling. There are a lot of starting XI questions for England to answer as they prepare to play Russia in a Group B Euro 2016 match at the Stade Vellodrome in Marseille on Saturday.
Hodgson played all three forwards in England's final friendly against Portugal, with Vardy and Kane playing as split strikers, while Rooney played through the middle. That formation did not quite go according to plan, with both Vardy and Kane constantly shunted to the wide positions, with it diminishing their goalscoring and being-in-the-right-positions-to-finish powers.
It is believed Hodgson is planning on playing Raheem Sterling in the starting XI, most probably in place of Vardy, to exploit Russia's ageing defence and give England a little more natural width. James Milner might also have to sit on the bench for this Euro 2016 match, with Adam Lallana or Jack Wilshere probably taking their place in the left of the diamond.
Alli, though, is set to start from the left side of the diamond again, despite the Tottenham man clearly not being quite as effective in that position. But with Hodgson saying Rooney is undroppable, Alli is likely to be kept from playing in his best position, which is behind the striker(s).
Hodgson has no injury problems going into this game, so it will be all about picking the right starting XI and seeing if they can perform against Russia.
"There is definitely a selection headache in terms of so many good players who could quite easily command a place in the team," Hodgson said when asked about his plans for the starting XI against Russia. "I'm pleased with the headaches and that having gone through three matches and some intensive training we still have all our players available."
Russia have already lost four key players to injury in Yuri Zhirkov, Igor Denisov, Alan Dzagoev and Denis Cheryshev, and Leonid Slutski, who has done such a great job since taking over from Fabio Capello, now has to worry about the fitness of Denis Glushakov, who is struggling with a muscle strain and Dmitri Torbinski, who is ill. If Glushakov is unable to feature, Roman Neustadter will come in his place.
Slutski's men have not been given much of a chance owing to the absence of quite a few of their major players, but if England struggle, again, going forward, the 2018 World Cup hosts might just be able to come away with a positive result.
Confirmed starting XI: England: Hart; Walker, Cahill, Smalling, Rose; Lallana, Dier, Alli; Rooney; Kane, Sterling.
Russia: Akinfeev; Smolnikov, Vasili Berezutski, Ignashevich, Schennikov; Golovin, Neustadter; Smolov, Shatov, Kokorin; Dzyuba.