Gareth Southgate

Southgate hails Bowen's journey

England manager Gareth Southgate believes Jarrod Bowen's journey to the top should serve as inspiration for young players throughout the country.

The West Ham United forward earned his first international call-up on Tuesday, being named in Southgate's Three Lions squad for UEFA Nations League matches against Hungary, Germany and Italy in June.

Bowen's inclusion in the senior squad for the first time is the latest step in a journey which has taken him from fifth-tier football with Hereford United in 2014, to 50 goal involvements in 104 West Ham United games just eight years later.

And as Southgate explained at his squad announcement press conference, Bowen's international recognition is well-deserved.

"Jarrod has given consistently strong performances," the England boss said. "We were certainly thinking about involving him in March before he got injured.

"I think he’s a goal threat, I think he’s direct, and I think his journey is really interesting in terms of the experiences he’s had.

"It’s a reminder that you don’t just have to be at an elite academy and come through that pathway.

"To play in the lower divisions and have that experience is also a great route to go. He works incredibly hard for the team, which we want all of our forward players to do, so he’s thoroughly deserved his call-up."

Bowen could make his England debut alongside West Ham teammate Declan Rice at the Puskás Aréna in Budapest, where England play their opening League A Group 3 tie against Hungary on Saturday 4 June.

The Three Lions then head 400 miles west to Munich, where they take on Germany at the Allianz Arena on Tuesday 7 June.

Just 45 miles from Bowen's boyhood home in the Herefordshire town of Leominster, Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Molineux then plays host to England’s final two games of the summer, with Italy the visitors on Saturday 11 June and Hungary following them on Tuesday 14 June.

Should Bowen feature, he will become West Ham’s 44th full England international.


Season Ticket renewals open for 2022/23 Premier League season