Arsenal’s youngster Bukayo Saka has had a meteoric rise this season as an attacking winger. In his first season under Mikel Arteta he was mostly used as a backup left back, but this season just passed he has cemented his place in the front line with the Gunners and has caused problems for defences up and down the country.
The 19 year-old keeps going from strength to strength and was this week surprisingly included in Gareth Southgate’s Euro 2020 squad despite his tender years, and he has repaid that faith by scoring the only goal for the Three Lions in last night’s friendly against Austria.
He was obviously over the moon, and speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live (as transcribed in the Standard) after the game, Saka said of his goal: “Probably the biggest moment of my career so far, the biggest moment was getting called up for England the first time and now to score the goal it sounds nice, it’s an amazing feeling for me.
“You dream of that as a kid, scoring for your country, coming through the age groups with England so to now do it here and score for the seniors, it’s an amazing feeling and I hope I can have this feeling many more times.
“Every game is an opportunity to grow in confidence and chemistry with my team-mates, so today is another step in the right direction.
“It’s a big honour to be named in the final squad, grateful to Gareth [Southgate], happy that I get the opportunity to represent my country in a major tournament so I’m looking forward to it a lot.”
A lot of pundits assumed that Saka was only in the squad as a versatile back up and to gain experience of a big tournament, but after his performance last night, Southgate may now be putting him higher up the pecking order ahead of England’s opening Group game against Croatia at Wembley.