Fabio Capello says there are seven places still to play for in his 23-man squad to travel to South Africa for the World Cup.
England concluded their qualifying campaign on Wednesday with a comfortable if inglorious defeat of Belarus that raised as many questions as it provided answers.
Only the core of Capello's squad can be all but certain of being on the plane to South Africa, with the rest of his squad competing for the remaining berths.
While press, supporters and perhaps even players will be reflecting on just who might get the nod, Capello insists it will be six months before he finalises his plans.
"At this moment it is impossible to speak about 23 players who will be with us in South Africa," said Capello.
"I have my ideas but next April I will have to check how they all are.
"Sometimes at the start of a season, the players are strong. At the end they are tired. That will make a difference.
"It is not just about being fit. Psychologically they need to be right as well. Only once I know what that situation is can I decide on the seven players who will stay with us."
One man who has done his hopes of a World Cup spot little harm in England's last couple of internationals is Aston Villa's James Milner.
The industrious midfielder has impressed his international boss with a versatility that could see him preferred over a less flexible rival.
"Milner did well," said the Italian.
"He is a really good player. He can play midfield, winger, left-back or right-back. He can play in every position apart from centre-forward and centre-back. That is very important."
While Milner's ability to play in a number of positions could work in his favour, it would seem Shaun Wright-Phillips is scrapping with Aaron Lennon for one spot.
As the Manchester City winger completed the full game against Belarus and scored, the night seemed to have gone in his favour. Capello, though, is refusing to let any of his charges rest on their laurels.
"At the moment we got the corner, I told Wright-Phillips he had to go towards Beckham," revealed Capello.
"He went. He received the ball. He shot and scored.
"I was happy for this and he did well. But I don't know why I had to tell him. He needs to see these things alone."