Roy Hodgson could be forgiven for feeling a tad envious. While the England manager was forced to select a squad for this week's crucial round of World Cup qualifiers from an increasingly shallow pool of talent, some national team managers were spoilt for choice. Vicente del Bosque was able to recall Juan Mata, but there is no place in his squad for Roberto Soldaldo. Didier Deschamps has brought Yohan Cabaye back into the fold, but plenty of French talent is still out in the cold. Meanwhile "Big Phil" Scolari could name a second-string 23 stronger than most first-choice squads.
So there is a huge amount of talent missing out on international football this week and instead getting a call-up to our Unwanted XI. Would this band of international outcasts stand a chance of qualifying? And who else should be in our side?
THE UNWANTED XI (4-1-3-2)
GK: David de Gea (Spain)
The Manchester United goalkeeper has put behind him a shaky start at Old Trafford and was in sensational form against Sunderland at the weekend. But the 22-year-old cannot force his way past Iker Casillas, Víctor Valdés and Pepe Reina in the Spain squad.
RB: César Azpilicueta (Spain)
With Azpilicueta lacking first-team action under José Mourinho's new regime at Stamford Bridge, the Spain coach Vicente del Bosque has looked elsewhere. Alvaro Arbeloa and Juanfran are the two right-backs in the Spain squad, with Azpilicueta in the queue along with Barcelona's Martín Montoya and Real Madrid's Daniel Carvajal.
CB: Angelo Ogbonna (Italy)
A member of the Italy Euro 2012 squad that finished as runners-up, the 6ft 2in defender made a much-anticipated €15m move from Torino to Juventus in the summer. But even with his Juve team-mate Andrea Barzagli out injured, the Italy coach Cesare Prandelli preferred to rely on Internazionale's Andrea Ranocchia.
CB: Adil Rami (France)
On the transfer list and out of the side at Valencia following a row with the coach Miroslav Djukic – Manchester City and Arsenal are among those rumoured to be interested in a January move. The veteran Eric Abidal, Liverpool's Mamadou Sakho, Laurent Koscielny of Arsenal and Real Madrid's Raphaël Varane are all ahead of him in the France pecking order.
LB: Filipe Luís (Brazil)
A key part of the Atlético Madrid team that won the Europa League in 2011-12 then hammered Chelsea in the Super Cup last season, and part of the Brazil squad that won the Confederations Cup this summer. Currently on the fringes of La Seleção, behind Marcelo and Maxwell.
DM: Sandro (Brazil)
Still working his way back from the anterior cruciate ligament injury that ended his 2012-13 season and has not featured for the national team since their friendlies against Japan and Iraq in October last year. Players such as Ramires and Lucas Leiva are ahead of the Tottenham midfielder in the race for a place in the hosts' squad for the World Cup.
MF: Nicolás Gaitán (Argentina)
Appeared destined for great things when he made his international debut as a 21-year-old in 2009 but a surfeit of attacking midfielders mean the Benfica playmaker has not featured for Argentina for two years. Regularly linked with a move to Manchester United (by his agent).
MF: Willian (Brazil)
The 25-year-old, who won two caps as a substitute in 2011, set his sights on a return to the national side after joining Chelsea in a £30m move this summer, but is yet to force his way into Luiz Felipe Scolari's thinking.
MF: Javier Pastore (Argentina)
Paris Saint-Germain paid a reported €39.8m to Palermo to secure the attacking midfielder's services, but the national team have not required him since 2011. Alex Sabella, the Argentina coach, has praised the player's "enormous talent" but seems to believe his system suits others, including Tottenham's Erik Lamela, better.
FW: Stefan Kiessling (Germany)
The leading scorer last season in the Bundesliga, with five in eight games this campaign for Bayer Leverkusen, has been overlooked by Jogi Löw yet again despite injuries to Mario Gomez and Miroslav Klose. Löw appeared to offer an olive branch to the 29-year-old, who essentially withdrew from consideration for Die Mannschaft last month, but Borussia Mönchengladbach's Max Kruse is the only out-and-out striker in the Germany squad this time round.
FW: Roberto Soldado (Spain)
Despite seven goals in 12 appearances the Spurs striker has never been a regular for the Spanish national team. His appearances have become more frequent of late, but he he has found himself surplus to requirements again and now appears to have fallen behind Swansea's Michu.
Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Germany) The next cab off the rank in Germany's exceptionally talented pool of goalkeepers.
Rafael da Silva (Brazil) La Seleção have rarely been short of decent full-backs and the current set-up is no exception – the Manchester United 23-year-old made his debut for the national side in 2012 but has since been largely ignored.
Claudio Yacob (Argentina) Arguably one of the most under-rated players in the Premier League after an outstanding 2012-13 season with West Bromwich Albion. Won two caps for Argentina in 2011 but does not look likely to feature in the World Cup.
Mathieu Flamini (France) Ignored by the national side since 2008 but has made a huge impact in Arsenal's superb start to the season.
Jérémy Ménez (France) Has featured regularly in Les Bleus qualifying campaign so far but has been kicking his heels in both international weeks so far this season.
Clint Dempsey (USA) Back in training after injury but the coach Jürgen Klinsmann feels he has no need to rush the former Fulham and Tottenham man back and has left him out of the squad to face Jamaica and Panama.
Graziano Pellè (Italy) Ten goals in nine Eredivisie appearances for Feyenoord this season on the back of 27 goals in 29 games in the last campaign. Only Wilfried Bony, now of Swansea, scored more in 2012-13, but the 28-year-old does not appear to be in Prandelli's thoughts.