Jack Wilshere and Andy Carroll look certain to play for England at the European Under-21 Championship after being named in the provisional squad for this summer's tournament.
Head coach Stuart Pearce kept his word to select Arsenal midfielder Wilshere and Liverpool striker Carroll - both of whom have begun to establish themselves in the senior side - in his initial 40-man party for the finals in Denmark.
Pearce ignored opposition from Gunners boss Arsene Wenger, who is against 19-year-old Wilshere's inclusion, while Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish's position on Carroll's selection is unclear.
The duo's selection is a boost to England's chances of winning the tournament having reached the semi-final in 2007 and final two years later.
They are among six players in the squad to have been capped at senior level, with Danny Welbeck, Jordan Henderson, Micah Richards and Kieran Gibbs.
Chris Smalling and Kyle Walker have also trained with Fabio Capello's squad.
The 40-man party announced on Tuesday will be reduced to 23 by June 1, four days before England play their final pre-tournament friendly against Norway in Southampton.
Their Under-21 Championship campaign begins a week later against Spain in Herning, where they will also face Ukraine three days after that before taking on Czech Republic in Viborg on June 19.
The top two in the group will progress to the semi-finals, with the final taking place on June 25.
England Under-21 Squad Provisional England Under-21 squad for European Championship finals in Denmark (June 10-25): Fielding (Blackburn), Loach (Watford), Steele (Middlesbrough), McCarthy (Reading), Bennett (Middlesbrough), Bertrand (Chelsea), Gibbs (Arsenal), Jones (Blackburn), Mancienne (Chelsea), Mee (Manchester City), Naughton (Tottenham), Richards (Manchester City), Smalling (Manchester United), Tomkins (West Ham), Trippier (Manchester City), Walker (Tottenham), Albrighton (Aston Villa), Cork (Chelsea), Cleverley (Manchester United), Davies (Bolton), Hammill (Wolves), Henderson (Sunderland), Howson (Leeds), Lallana (Southampton), Lansbury (Arsenal), McEachran (Chelsea), Muamba (Bolton), Rodwell (Everton), Rose (Tottenham), Sinclair (Swansea), Wilshere (Arsenal), Carroll (Liverpool), Delfouneso (Aston Villa), Hooper (Celtic), Rodriguez (Burnley), Sears (West Ham), Sturridge (Chelsea), Vaughan (Everton), Welbeck (Manchester United), Wickham (Ipswich).