MX23RW : Wednesday, December 19 02:09:37

Sancho won’t be fazed by England call-up, says Theo Walcott

Borussia Dortmund’s Sancho was a surprise pick for England, just as Walcott was before the 2006 World Cup.

Theo Walcott has backed Jadon Sancho to thrive with England after his shock selection.

Borussia Dortmund forward Sancho, 18, has been called up for Nations League games in Croatia on Friday and Spain on Monday.

He has started just once in the Bundesliga for Dortmund this season but has registered six assists, scoring once.

Everton’s Walcott was just 17 when he was a surprise pick for the 2006 World Cup – although he did not play in Germany – having not made a senior appearance for Arsenal at the time.

And, after his experience, the forward believes Sancho can perform.

“He can deal with it, he’s been in the Dortmund dressing room, he’s played at their stadium which is fantastic. He won’t be fazed at all,” said Walcott, who has 47 England caps.

“It’s completely different now, there are a lot of young players in that group. When I came through there was Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard – completely established players in the team – so it’s a different environment I would say.

Theo Walcott made his senior England debut in a friendly against Hungary in May 2006
Theo Walcott made his senior England debut in a friendly against Hungary in May 2006 (Gareth Copley/PA)

“Of course it’s still daunting but when you get down on the field and play football that’s all you want to do, you just want to play, it doesn’t matter who it’s for.

“You just want to go out there and do your best and I’m sure everyone will.

“The young players with England is fantastic to see and they’ve just got to take their chances. Good luck to them all.”

Walcott has not played for England since November 2016 and confirmed he did not speak to manager Gareth Southgate before his squad was announced last week.

Walcott has a shot on goal in the win over Leicester
Walcott has a shot on goal in the win over Leicester (Nick Potts/PA)

He helped Everton to a 2-1 win at Leicester on Saturday as the Toffees moved into the Premier League’s top 10.

“We did play some good stuff in the first half, not quite finishing it off in the second half,” he said.

“We have worked really hard after the disappointment (losing to Southampton in the Carabao Cup) so to come back get three points is great. It’s 12 points now going into the international break, yeah, we’re on the way up.”


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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Borussia DortmundDortmund16123142172539
2Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach16103335161933
3Bayern Munich1593332181430
4RB Leipzig1584328141428
5Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt1582532181426
6Wolfsburg167452420425
7Hertha Berlin166642524124
8Hoffenheim156543021923
9Werder Bremen156362525021
10Mainz 05155461419-519
11Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen155372127-618
12Freiburg154561924-517
13Augsburg163672326-315
14Schalke 04Schalke154381621-515
15Fortuna DusseldorfDusseldorf164391833-1515
16Stuttgart1642101132-2114
17Nuremberg162591437-2311
18Hannover152491633-1710

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