Ashley Young, 37, 'was named on Gareth Southgate's 55-man provisional England squad for World Cup 2022' | The Sun

VETERAN Premier League star Ashley Young was a surprise name in Gareth Southgate's provisional 55-man World Cup squad, reports claim.

The 37-year-old Aston Villa ace has not played for England since the last World Cup in Russia.

He was even named in the team of the tournament four years ago after a string of impressive performances in the Three Lions' run to the semi-finals.

And his resurgent form this season saw him included in Southgate's provisional squad, according to the Telegraph.

Young has started eight out of Villa's last nine Premier League games.

The experienced former Manchester United man started just 10 Prem games in the entirety of last season.

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However, the Telegraph report there was never the expectation for Young to make Southgate's final squad.

The 55-man provisional squad will be whittled down to the final 26 on Thursday.

England's first game against Iran is now just 12 days away.

While there was never thought to be any real prospect of him making the plane to Qatar, being included in the provisional squad is an impressive achievement for the Prem stalwart.

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Young has been capped 39 times by England in total, scoring seven goals.

Elsewhere, Chelsea defender Reece James has admitted he is "devastated" to be missing the tournament through injury.

After injuring his knee last month, a positive scan on Monday increased the James' belief he return in time for the knockouts.

But Three Lions boss Southgate rang the Blues ace this week to tell him he could not afford to take a risk on his fitness.

James' Chelsea pal Ben Chilwell will also miss the tournament due to a hamstring problem.

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