Climbing the ladder
By Nicholas Veevers
Wednesday, 09 November, 2011
George Thorne sees U19s as a good platform for further recognition.
England U19s schemer George Thorne is hoping good performances for Noel Blake's Young Lions can lead to further international recognition in the future.
The West Bromwich Albion midfielder has already represented England at U16, U17, U18 and U19 level and was due to play for the U20s in last summer's World Cup in Colombia, only to be withdrawn by his club to train with their first team.
Now, he's setting his sights on catching the eye of Under-21s chief Stuart Pearce and knows that good performances for the U19s can help him achieve that goal.
“In every game we play, either Stuart Pearce, Sir Trevor Brooking or Gareth Southgate is there, sometimes all three, so there’s a big watch over this age group,” revealed Thorne ahead of Thursday's match with Denmark in Brighton.
“There’s been the likes of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Josh McEachran, Ross Barkley and Jack Butland who have gone up (to the Under-21s) so that shows that there is a trust and a belief in the players of our age that have been coming through the ranks.
"So there is an opportunity there and if it comes then you hope to take it."
Having been involved with this particular year group for three years now and becoming a European U17 Champion in 2010, Thorne knows better than most about the strength in depth of the players at Blake's disposal.
“There’s a different crop every year and obviously players come in and players go out, but in this group they are all of a high standard," he said.
"There aren’t too many who come in and then don’t come back anymore. Everyone can do a job and they’re doing the same job for their clubs so that’s why they’re here.
“There is a good competition for places though and it’s good for each player to set a high standard for themselves.”
The full interview with George will appear in the match programme, which will be available at the Amex Stadium and also online soon.