Watkins hails England debut goal: ‘It’s what I’ve dreamt about’

The Aston Villa forward was called up by Gareth Southgate for the first time earlier this month and made his international bow as a second-half substitute in the World Cup qualifier, replacing Dominic Calvert-Lewin and quickly opening his account with a smart turn and finish. 

It is the latest step in a rapid rise for the 25-year-old, who was playing in League Two with Exeter City four years ago and only earned a move to the Premier League last summer after excelling for Brentford in the Championship.

“It’s what I’ve dreamt about, to be honest,” Watkins told ITV. “All day in the hotel, just hoping I’d get a chance and just to enjoy it, hoping I’d get the opportunity to potentially score. I’m speechless, to be honest. 

“It’s been a good journey, I just feel honoured to come out here and get the chance to put on this shirt and play with the players I’m playing with.

“To score on my debut, I couldn’t write it, I’m over the moon.”

With England 3-0 up and cruising against the side sat bottom of Fifa’s world rankings, Southgate made four changes at the break, but Watkins was not among them. 

With only one substitute remaining, the Villa man looked to be facing a night on the bench when centre-back Conor Coady went down early in the second-half, but thankfully the Wolves skipper was able to continue. 

“I just wanted to get on the pitch for a start, I didn’t even know if I was going to come on,” Watkins added. “Conor had a head clash there and I thought I may not get the opportunity to come on tonight. 

“I’m going to take each game as it comes, focus on my club form, play consistently for Aston Villa, score for them, help the team push up the table and hopefully get into Europe and take it from there.”

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