Saido Berahino driven to help England U21s reach Euros

Tuesday 07 Oct 2014
Berahino has been in good form with England and West Brom so far this season
England Under-21s hot-shot Saido Berahino says he is flattered by calls for him to have been called up to Roy Hodgson's squad.

The West Bromwich Albion striker is the highest-scoring English player in the Premier League, scoring five goals.

But as the Under-21s’ top scorer in qualifying and with two crucial Euro play-off games against Croatia coming up this week, the 21-year-old was always likely to stay with Gareth Southgate’s group which is something he was more than happy with.

England U21s v Croatia U21s

UEFA Euro U21s Championship
Play-off first leg
5.45pm, Friday 10 October
Molineux, Wolverhampton Wanderers
Live on BT Sport
Call 0871 222 1877 for tickets

"I don’t get carried away with it, I still think as a player I have a lot to learn and I am trying to improve with every game," said Berahino.

"It is great that I am getting noticed with what I am doing at the moment but I am still delighted that I get call-ups to the Under-21s and we have an important game next week.

"It’s unbelievable that I am getting noticed but I’m just staying focused."

Berahino arrived at St. George’s Park on Sunday evening, the day after scoring for Albion at Anfield in their 2-1 defeat against Liverpool.

And Southgate’s squad were straight out onto the training pitch on Monday morning as their focus was immediately set on the first leg of the play-off in Wolverhampton this Friday.

"We have got a very difficult game against a great nation in Croatia and we have to try and beat them to get through to the Euros," added Berahino.

Saido Berahino is congratulated by Jake Forster-Caskey

Saido Berahino is the Under-21s' top scorer in qualifying so far

"We have had a great qualifying campaign, but it all comes down to these last games, which we have to win if we want to go to the Euros so all the boys are looking forward to it.

"Hopefully we can beat them home and away."

Berahino has been a regular for England throughout all of the various development teams over the years, winning the Euro title with the U17s and playing in a World Cup with the U20s along the way.

And he believes the squad in place for the Under-21s over the campaign is well placed to challenge for a spot at the Finals in Czech Republic next summer.

"It is always a great squad," he said. "We have a lot of good, young and talented English footballers so I am glad and blessed to be in the squad.

"We started the qualifying campaign really well.

Saido Berahino scored twice against Moldova in the Under-21s' last game in September


"It would be great if we qualified for the big championship coming up in the summer and it will be a great test for us to play against Croatia next week.

"Hopefully we can get over the final hurdle and beat Croatia."

You can still be at Molineux to cheer England on in the game, with tickets priced at just £10 for adults and £5 for juniors. Call 0871 222 1877 or click here to purchase your tickets.

By Nicholas Veevers Content Manager - FA Owned Channels At St. George's Park