Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Hudson-Odoi ´speechless´ after becoming youngest competitive England debutant

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 22 Mar 2019

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Callum Hudson-Odoi was “speechless” after becoming the youngest player to represent England in a competitive international during Friday’s 5-0 hammering of the Czech Republic.

England were on top form at Wembley, tearing their visitors apart and making an emphatic start to Euro 2020 qualifying.

Raheem Sterling was the pick of the bunch with a hat-trick, but Hudson-Odoi – who replaced the Manchester City star – had a hand in the final goal, as goalkeeper Jiri Pavlenka parried his shot and Tomas Kalas put into his own net with a woeful first touch.

Hudson-Odoi was making his first appearance for England despite not having started a Premier League game for Chelsea yet, and he was left struggling to comprehend his situation.

“I’m absolutely delighted,” the 18-year-old told ITV. “I just want to thank everyone who’s helped me get where I am today.

“Obviously the opportunity to come on in front of a home crowd was absolutely amazing. I can’t believe it, I’m speechless.”

Jadon Sancho also enjoyed a lively match after making his first senior start, setting up Sterling’s first and catching the eye with his silky footwork.

Initially he looked a little nervous, but support from captain Harry Kane helped him get back on track.

“He [Kane] just said keep being positive, as the first couple of one-on-ones didn’t go my way,” said the Borussia Dortmund star.

“He just said that and I stuck to the plan. In training, me and ‘H’ have a special connection, so once he touched the ball [in the build-up to Sterling’s opener], I knew he was going to do a reverse pass in behind and it was an easy goal for Raheem.

“In training he speaks to me, he gives me advice, tells me to be confident on the ball, off the ball, just keep working hard. Coming from the captain and such a great player, it’s a nice boost.”

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