Newcastle United star backed to earn surprise England World Cup call-up - on one condition

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The Magpies frontman has not featured in a Three Lions squad for over three years.

Former Sunderland striker Darren Bent has insisted Newcastle United striker Callum Wilson would be in the England World Cup Finals squad if he can remain fit.

The former Bournemouth striker has earned four Three Lions caps during his time on the South coast with appearances against France, Montenegro, Switzerland and Bulgaria - but he is yet to earn a call-up since his move to St James Park.

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Injury issues have hampered his attempts to impress Gareth Southgate, although the United striker has proven his worth to both Steve Bruce and Eddie Howe with 23 goals in 53 appearances for the Magpies.  There is plenty of competition at the top end of the pitch in Southgate’s squad, with Harry Kane establishing himself as the England manager’s preferred frontman.

But the likes of Brentford’s Ivan Toney, Roma star Tammy Abraham and Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin have all received call-ups in the last few years.  Wilson has not appeared in an England squad since a substitute appearance in a 6-0 win in Bulgaria in October 2019 - and Bent believes the Magpies star should at least part of the conversation when Southgate names his initial squad for the finals in Qatar.

“I genuinely think, if he (Wilson) could stay fit he would be in the squad. One hundred per cent.  He has been brilliant for Newcastle when he’s fit. Do you know what I like about him? He scores against all the big heads (big clubs) as well.

“He doesn’t just score against the little teams either.  Who’s the three? (Harry) Kane, (Tammy) Abraham and (Ivan) Toney? You wouldn’t have any arguments from me but I’m saying Callum Wilson, if he was fit.”

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When asked if the Magpies striker would find his way into the squad ahead of Roma striker Abraham, Bent added:  “I don’t know about that, tough. But if he was fully fit all the time that would give Gareth Southgate some serious problems.”

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