Friday 20 Nov
Updated Friday 20 Nov 16:00

Howes eyeing further successes

Sam Howes is looking forward to the Young Hammers' encounter with Norwich City
Highly rated goalkeeper Sam Howes has enjoyed a week to remember, first celebrating his 18th birthday before playing for the England U19s against their Dutch counterparts.

Howes put in an assured display in Holland, which saw the Young Lions recover from a 2-0 deficit to secure a draw thanks to goals from Ryan Ledson and Tammy Abraham.

Speaking about the positive experience, Howes said: “It was a good test against Holland, we’ve played them several times recently and they are always good games.

“It was a good test for us, one that I think we did well in and passed.

“The team spirit in the squad is really good, it always has been. We know each other’s games inside out and that definitely helps when coming to playing games. To come back from 2-0 down, away in Holland, is clearly a big achievement.”

Alongside Howes in the England squad was teammate Reece Oxford who made his U19s’ debut in a 5-1 win over Japan.

Looking across the England teams it has clearly been a good time for young players, from Dele Alli’s wonderstrike at Wembley to Duncan Watmore’s heroics in the U21s.

Howes continued to speak of his pride at being part of a new wave of English talent: “It’s very exciting to be involved. There’s a lot of talent in the England youth teams. There are a lot of players doing well in the Premier League or out on loan in the lower leagues in the U21, U20 and U19 so you can see the quality.

“In the U19s, there’s a lot of talent. And we’re being pushed as hard as we can, it’s tough but that’s the best way to learn and develop. If we continue on this path, then hopefully we’ll all be successful.   

“The whole squad is full of top class players, there’s a reason why they are the best in England and we all jel together well. All the boys are doing well for their clubs, scoring goals and keeping clean sheets so it’s looking positive for English football really.

“The main difference between club football and international is the preparation. Obviously, with England you don’t get the same amount of time to prepare, with clubs you can prepare for weeks and even months. Against Holland, we only had three days to prepare and organise a structure.”

Having returned to his beloved Hammers, Howes has gone straight back into training with the first team at Chadwell Heath.

While the shot-stopper has been involved with the senior side for some time now, the novelty of training alongside Adrian and Darren Randolph clearly has not worn off yet.

“It’s really good, I’m really enjoying it. To be training regularly with the likes of Adrian, Daz (Randolph) and Rafa (Spiegel) is fantastic.

“To work with Chris Woods all the time is also fantastic, he’s a great mentor, of course having played for England himself he’s a role model and his advice will benefit me in the long term.

“There are little areas where he has helped me to tighten up my game; I’ve definitely improved under him.”

Howes’ concentration is now fully focused of the U18’s encounter with Norwich City on Saturday 21 November at Little Heath.

The young Hammers have been in superb recently, winning eight of their last ten games.

Looking ahead to the game with the Canaries, Howes said: “The boys are on a good run at the moment; hopefully we can string a few results together, the best is yet to come from us as a team but also individually.”

West Ham United U18s host Norwich City U18 at Little Heath on Saturday 21 November. Kick off is 11am, admission is FREE.