If Eriksson wants more creativity, he could move Beckham inside and play Sinclair or Owen Hargreaves on the right.
But Sinclair is better on the left and Hargreaves may already have been earmarked to take over from Gary Neville at right-back.
And unless Eriksson reveals a hitherto hidden gambling streak, Joe Cole will still have to bide his time on the substitutes' bench.
Seven into 23 does not go
With Kieron Dyer also unlikely to travel to Japan, the balance of Eriksson's original squad now comes under scrutiny.
He picked seven midfielders, five strikers and eight defenders - a balance that leans heavily in the direction of caution.
Spain's coach Jose Antonio Camacho, by contrast, will be taking 10 midfielders.
Of Eriksson's eight defensive picks, five are central defenders. Was there really any need to pick both Danny Mills and Wes Brown, when both do the same job of providing cover at full-back and centre-back?
If he had taken just one of the two, it would have freed up another place in the midfield - which could have been taken by Steve McManaman or Darren Anderton, experienced internationals who could only have added to Eriksson's options.
If Butt does not regain his fitness - or, God forbid, Beckham suffers a relapse - the midfield blend will have gone from intoxicating to unconvincing at exactly the wrong time.