By Danny Lewis
With the European Championships quickly approaching, players across the Premier League are looking to get into the England side.
Those at AFC Bournemouth are no different. After there were no Cherries in the England squad for the upcoming friendlies against Germany and Holland, England opportunities was a hot topic at the latest press conference.
There have been a number of English Cherries performing well this season, Charlie Daniels was touted for a place in the England squad and Simon Francis heads a group of other Englishmen who have also excelled for AFC Bournemouth since making the step up to the Premier League.
Adam Smith is hopeful that AFC Bournemouth could provide England with one of their stars: “Obviously it would have been nice for a few of the lads to get into the England squad, but this is their first season in the Premier League so it’s going to be difficult.”
“Hopefully next season if we keep up the good performances some of the lads can get into the England squad.”
When asked about his own chances of eventually forcing his own way into the England squad, Steve Cook said: “I’m 24, I’m starting to play my best football I’ve played, I’m enjoying it and that’s my dream, I don’t see why not.”
“I’ve obviously got a lot to learn, there’s a lot of terrific English centre backs that haven’t had a call up before so it’s extremely hard, you look at Scott Dann and Ryan Shawcross. Hopefully time is on my side and I can keep making the improvements and maybe one day it will happen.”
It would be a magnificent achievement if Cook, Smith or any other Cherries teammates could make it into the England team as no player from the club has achieved this foot in the club’s 127 year history.
Manager Eddie Howe has urged his players to not lose heart: “They have got to keep performing as they have been and it’s not too late. There are still plenty of games to go to force their way in.”
“I’m personally not disappointed because it means I get to keep the players training with us. For the players themselves, I think they have been excellent and I’m sure they would have been in Roy Hodgson’s mind.”
The climb that these Bournemouth players have taken up the ladder of English football has already been astonishing, but only time will tell if they will make it onto the final rung and pull on the Three Lions shirt of England.