England manager Roy Hodgson admits a "big name" could to be omitted from his World Cup squad this summer – increasingly the likelihood that Chelsea's Ashley Cole could be among those to miss out after Luke Shaw earned his maiden call-up for the friendly with Denmark.
Cole has made just 12 league starts for the Blues this season under Jose Mourinho but is expected to be handed a contract extension at the end of the campaign.
The 33 year old reached a century of international caps in last February's win over Brazil but featured in just four of England's World Cup qualifiers, with Leighton Baines' form for Everton seeing him emerge as Hodgson's first choice at left-back.
Despite being among England's old guard including Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard, Cole, who has 106 caps to his name, has seen his participation in Brazil this summer throw into doubt by Hodgson.
"I am very conscious of the fact that I could have to leave a big name out," said Hodgson. "It was a very different kettle of fish a couple of years ago (before Euro 2012), I don't think there was much debate then.
"It wasn't easy before the Euros to be honest. This time it is going to be even harder.
"Because before the Euros at least I was choosing names of players I knew and players I had seen play but had never really worked with.
"This time I will have to disappoint some people I have worked with who have maybe done a good job for me and the team."
Shaw joins Baines in the squad for the friendly against Denmark, the final chance Hodgson will get to assess his players in an England shirt ahead of selecting his 23-man squad for the finals.
After a sterling 18 months in the Southampton first team, the timing of Shaw's call-up is significant given it comes four months prior to the finals and amid Cole's marginalisation in the Chelsea team.
Though the 18 year old Shaw has been called into the 30-man squad for next week's game, Hodgson is refusing to confirm he will give the Saints left-back his first cap.
"It is a logical thought but I can't make promises," he said. "I think everyone who has watched him play recently will not deny that he deserves a place in a large squad like this.
"It would be nice if he gets to play on Wednesday night, but that decision hasn't been made."
Former England and Chelsea defender Graeme Le Saux says there is a major question mark over Cole's place in the squad for the World Cup.
"Leighton Baines and Luke Shaw absolutely had to be picked in that squad. I think the one question mark was about Ashley Cole because he hasn't played for Chelsea," he told talkSPORT.
"The fact Roy's put him in the squad says to everybody the door is still open for Ashley Cole if he can get back in the Chelsea squad. If he can get back in the Chelsea team and show some form then he is an obvious choice to go to Brazil but unfortunately football is very cruel in that sense, it doesn't wait for anyone.
"Luke Shaw has had a fantastic season and he really deserves his call up. At the moment with Ashley Cole not playing regularly for Chelsea, he's benefitted from the luxury of a 30-man squad."