England manager Gareth Southgate has put to bed weeks of speculations by handing call ups to the Chelsea duo amidst serious attentions from Nigeria, the other country both players were eligible to play for.
Tammy Abraham and Fikayo Tomori have finally been called up to the England squad set to face Czech Republic and Bulgaria in a fortnight, as Gareth Southgate explains that calling them up had nothing to do with beating Nigeria to their services.
The 22-year-old Abraham has banged in seven goals in the Premier League and netted his first Champions League goal in midweek in the Blues’ victory at Lille and had been the subject of attentions from the Nigeria Football Federation.
Southgate has however moved to silence all controversies by drafting the youngster into the England squad for the next round of qualifiers.
“He’s a super kid, so he’s got a lovely manner about him; he wants to be better. Although he’s clearly so tall, he’s still physically developing his strength and holding play up, holding defenders off,” South gate explained his decision, according to quotes obtained from the Mirror by Soccernet.ng.
“There are still elements of that part of his game that can be bettered. His build-up, his ability to arrive in the right areas and finish have always been there, but I think just that confidence… He’s got seasons under his belt now, he’s scored regularly, he’s now doing it at the highest level.
“He comes in, rather than being a young player looking at all the other players thinking where do I fit in, he’s top of those scoring charts. He should walk through the door at St. George’s and be ready to seriously challenge.”
On why he called up both Fikayo Tomori and Tammy Abraham right when the two boys were seriously considering switching allegiance to the country of their parents, Southgate said:
“I don’t think it’s ethically right just to give a player a cap to make sure they can’t play for somebody else. So, the two boys that are in the squad this time, Fik [Fikayo Tamori] and Tammy, are in on merit.
“I’m not going to guarantee that they’re going to get on the pitch, but they’ve both been part of our junior system right the way through.
“Fik came in a little bit later than Tammy but has been part of the youth team that won the World Cup. The two boys have been developed through English football, they’re English players and I’m sure they have huge desire to play for England at senior level.”