Dominic Calvert-Lewin has scored one goal in two Premier League starts this season
A knee injury has troubled Everton striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin so far this season, but has his return to fitness come just in time for him to be considered for England’s World Cup squad?
Calvert-Lewin started just his second Premier League match of the season on Saturday, scoring the opener as the Blues put in an impressive display to beat Crystal Palace 3-0.
Even better for the 25-year-old was that his smart turn and finish in the 11th minute came in front of watching England manager Gareth Southgate, and his tireless performance was rewarded with a standing ovation when he came off in the second half at Goodison Park.
“It’s been a while, one I’ve been waiting for, one I’ve been looking forward to and I felt like myself. It’s been a long time coming but great to get the result,” said Calvert-Lewin.
“As a striker you feed off confidence and you feed off goals. A lot of hard work has gone into getting that first goal so I am over the moon.”
Asked if he can do enough to catch the manager’s eye before England’s World Cup squad is announced next month, Calvert-Lewin added: “It’s every boy’s dream to go to the World Cup. I’ve been counting down the days to get back on the pitch and all I can do is play the best I can for Everton, score goals and see where that takes me.”
Southgate will name a 26-man squad to take to Qatar, with England’s opening match coming against Iran on 21 November.
Calvert-Lewin was part of the England squad that reached the Euro 2020 final, although he only played 18 minutes during the tournament.
He has scored four goals in 11 appearances under Southgate, who handed him his England debut against Wales in October 2020, but he has not featured since last summer after also enduring an injury-hit 2021-22 season.
However, Everton boss Frank Lampard said he was “delighted” Calvert-Lewin could show Southgate he was back firing at Goodison Park and feels he may have “a case” to be on the plane to Qatar.
“I know how much he wants to force his way into that picture. He loves playing for his country and has been involved many times before,” Lampard told BBC Sport.
“His injury has been a huge frustration to him. All I would say is I won’t pick Gareth’s team for him at all, but he does know what Dominic can do because he’s worked with him before.”
England captain Harry Kane is the undisputed first-choice central striker but there is competition for the back-up role.
Brentford’s Ivan Toney was called up for the first time in September for the Nations League games against Italy and Germany and has scored eight goals in 11 appearances already this season.
Toney has been in top form but Leeds’ Patrick Bamford, who is yet to score this season, and Aston Villa’s Ollie Watkins, with just one goal, have struggled to make their mark.
Newcastle’s Callum Wilson has three goals in seven games, while Roma’s Tammy Abraham has two goals in 10 Serie A appearances.
“Dominic has to show how fit and fresh he is for Everton and today was an all-round performance of what he is, which makes him an England striker, Everton striker and Premier League striker,” added Lampard.
“The rest is for Gareth to choose. If he can stay fit then maybe he can make a case for himself.”
Send your news stories to [email protected] and via WhatsApp on +233 546310076.
Copyright © 2007 – 2022. GhanaSoccernet