Published: Sat, October 13, 2018
Sport | By Joe Gonzales

Jaden Sancho admits England senior call-up was a surprise

Jaden Sancho admits England senior call-up was a surprise

England face the prospect of competing in two Uefa Nations League matches against World Cup finalists Croatia and 2010 World Cup champions Spain which, should he feature, would see Sancho have a tough introduction on the worldwide stage.

Christian Pulisic, the U.S. worldwide and a Dortmund team-mate, has been a big influence: "He is another young guy, and I learn from him".

Jadon Sancho, 18, and Mason Mount, 19, who made moves to get more first team football, and James Maddison, who jumped to the Premier League, are all rewarded with a first call-up.

His youth coach in Watford under-14 academy, Louis Lancaster, had asked him what his dream was and the 13 years old Sancho had promptly replied that he wanted to represent his country and make his family proud. Underneath there are a litany of comments, proclaiming Sancho as "a talent".

In the not too distant past, a list of the top 50 active English players could have been hand picked from the highest division in England alone.

Sancho said: "Obviously moving from home, that was the biggest". Obviously they were delighted for me and I couldn't stop smiling the whole day, Sancho told Sky Sports during his first England press conference.

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"Sometimes the best way to grow is to come out of your comfort zone". "You can not learn that brilliance".

Sancho has gone against the grain having taken his craft to Germany in a bid for more opportunities in a first-team environment.

In regards to the Nations League in general, I have to disagree with Jürgen Klopp's description of it as a "senseless" competition. They mean more and will only help those who take part before competing at major tournaments, such as the World Cup.

Sancho got the same award at the European Under-17 championships previous year, as well as being part of the squad that won the Under-17 World Cup, although his participation was limited after being recalled by Dortmund halfway through the tournament to play for the first team. It happens and hopefully Florence Guillemin, the French official who was in charge at Craven Cottage on Tuesday, looks at the decisions she made and learns from them.

England's prowess from set-pieces played a huge role in their World Cup success and again proved a potent weapon. Despite this, the 18-year-old felt he had more chance of playing first team football elsewhere. In typical humble fashion she laughed it off, so I am delighted to see it has now become a reality. Hopefully she goes on to win the prize.

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