Jamie Carragher and Ledley King are the shock call-ups to Fabio Capello's provisional 30-man Three Lions World Cup squad
Neither Carragher nor King has played a game for the Three Lions under Capello, although the Tottenham man was called into the squad for a double header against Slovakia and the Ukraine last year, only to be ditched a couple of days later on fitness grounds.
However, with doubts over Rio Ferdinand and John Terry, and Wes Brown and Joleon Lescott ruled out through injury, Capello has talked Carragher out of retirement and will have a look at the Liverpool man, plus King, who has just played four games in 15 days, before finalising his 23-man squad for South Africa.
However, with Gareth Barry selected, despite on-going concerns over the ankle injury he suffered during Manchester City's defeat to Tottenham last week, Capello has decided not to call on Owen Hargreaves, as had been predicted even though the midfielder has played only one minute of senior football since October 2008.
Instead, West Ham's Scott Parker is included in a midfield also containing Joe Cole, who has not been involved since the sensational win over Croatia in September 2008.
Manchester City's Adam Johnson is one of two uncapped players in Capello's squad, the other being Tottenham defender Michael Dawson.
Only three goalkeepers - David James, Robert Green and Joe Hart - have been named, whilst attempts to talk Wayne Bridge out of making himself unavailable have been less successful than Capello's efforts with Carragher.
Amongst the players who were mentioned as candidates but did not receive a call were Gary Neville, who was an outside bet anyway, Stewart Downing and Carlton Cole.
In addition, Bobby Zamora has failed to secure a place amongst the final 30 despite his outstanding contribution to Fulham's excellent season.
Instead, Darren Bent has been handed a place despite his ineffective performance against Brazil last November.
Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill will be disappointed there are no spots for Downing, Gabriel Agbonlahor or Ashley Young, even if Stephen Warnock will travel along with James Milner.
Missing out on today's squad does not necessarily end all hope of reaching the World Cup.
Once his final 23-man party is named after the second of two forthcoming friendlies, against Japan in Graz on May 30, Capello can still make changes due to injury and those replacements do not have to come out of the original 30.
Preliminary England squad:
Joe Hart, David James, Robert Green, Leighton Baines, Jamie Carragher, Ashley Cole, Michael Dawson, Rio Ferdinand, Glen Johnson, Ledley King, John Terry, Matthew Upson, Stephen Warnock, Gareth Barry, Michael Carrick, Joe Cole, Steven Gerrard, Tom Huddlestone, Adam Johnson, Frank Lampard, Aaron Lennon, James Milner, Scott Parker, Theo Walcott, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Darren Bent, Peter Crouch, Jermain Defoe, Emile Heskey, Wayne