This morning England coach Fabio Capello announced his final 23-man squad that will make the trip to South Africa.
This means that seven players from the provisional 30-man panel received bad news today.
But one player will certainly be more shocked at his omission than the others.
Find out who in our guide to the 23 players chasing World Cup glory.
The three goalkeepers in the provisional squad were all certain to be on the plane to South Africa. However, deciding who starts England’s opener against the USA is the real issue.
David James is the long-standing number one, but injuries and a reputation for major errors have raised doubts about his position.
Joe Hart had an excellent season on loan at Birmingham City, while Robert Green saw plenty of action at struggling West Ham. Both have impressed in recent friendly matches.
However, goalkeeper is a role that calls for experience above all else so James should start.
The only real decision that Capello had to make was who would provide backup to Ashley Cole at left-back.
Everton’s Leighton Baines made that decision easier with a poor showing in the friendly against Mexico.
Stephen Warnock got the nod from the Italian ahead of Baines, though it was perhaps the Blackburn man’s versatility that persuaded Capello.
Liverpool’s Glen Johnson is first choice at right-back, with his club captain Jamie Carragher providing cover.
Carragher, who was recently persuaded out of international retirement, can also play at center-half.
Center-half is currently one of the most discussed positions amongst England fans.
Capello’s first-choice pairing of John Terry and captain Rio Ferdinand have showed indifferent form of late and the latter is struggling with a back injury.
However the two are almost certain to start against the USA and only injury or suspension would see Tottenham’s Ledley King or West Ham’s Matthew Upson called into action.
Capello will have his entire squad looking over their shoulders after his shock decision to leave Arsenal winger Theo Walcott out of his final 23.
Walcott was a hero of England’s qualifying campaign when he scored a hat-trick in the victory over Croatia in Zagreb.
But Capello displayed his ruthless side, when he judged the 21-year old’s recent performances for both club and country as not good enough for a World Cup. In fact the bigger surprise was almost who took Walcott’s place.
Many predicted that Man City’s young winger Adam Johnson would get it after sparkling form for his club towards the end of the year. Instead Capello chose his club colleague, Shaun Wright-Phillips.
The winger was once considered a bright young star of English football but it seemed he hadn’t progressed over the past few years and would never be a truly top level player. Perhaps Capello feels he still has more to give.
Another beneficiary of Walcott’s exclusion is Tottenham winger Aaron Lennon, who now looks certain to start on the right side of midfield.
The other uncertain inclusion was Joe Cole, but the Chelsea player’s intervention to help England beat Japan in the recent friendly confirmed that England sometimes need a dose of the unpredictable.
Aston Villa’s James Milner will provide backup to the wide players, though is unlikely to feature in his club position in the center of the pitch after a poor showing there against Mexico.
The central midfield is another cause for concern, as Capello waits on the fitness of his preferred holding midfielder Gareth Barry. Frank Lampard is a certain starter, as is Steven Gerrard, though where Gerrard plays is not totally set in stone.
The Liverpool midfielder played the majority of the qualifiers on the left side of midfield and can also play as a support striker.
In Barry’s absence Capello might be tempted to pair Gerrard in the center with Lampard, but history has often proved that this partnership is unworkable.
So, Capello may give another chance to Manchester United’s Michael Carrick, despite his currently poor form.
No major surprises in the striking department from Capello, as his four picks were widely predicted.
Sunderland’s Darren Bent must be wondering what he has to do to force his way into the Italian’s thinking after scoring 24 goals for his club this season.
Meanwhile, Emile Heskey barely featured for his club side but is included as he forms a good partnership with Wayne Rooney.
Rooney is England’s great hope and if he can reproduce his club form in South Africa, his country may have a chance of lifting the World Cup.
England’s other forward options are good, and the unsettling yet skilful Peter Crouch must be pushing for a starting berth instead of Heskey.
His club colleague at Tottenham Jermain Defoe should see plenty of action from the substitutes bench.
Joe Hart, David James, Robert Green.
Jamie Carragher, Ashley Cole, Rio Ferdinand, Glen Johnson, Ledley King, John Terry, Matthew Upson, Stephen Warnock.
Gareth Barry, Michael Carrick, Joe Cole, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Aaron Lennon, James Milner, Shaun Wright-Phillips.
Peter Crouch, Jermain Defoe, Emile Heskey, Wayne Rooney.
In addition to Walcott, Baines, Johnson and Bent, Capello left out three other players.
Tottenham defender Michael Dawson had a great season for his club but Capello may have felt he was not yet ready to make the step up to international level.
His club colleague Tom Huddlestone is similarly inexperienced but should also be one for the future.
West Ham United midfielder Scott Parker may have felt he had a chance of making the squad, given the injury to Gareth Barry. Parker was his club side’s only consistent performer this season and did much to save them from relegation.