SCRAPHEAP TO ENG­LAND FOR WIL­SON

Irish Daily Mirror - - RUGBY LGE - BY JAMES NURSEY

ENG­LAND prospect Cal­lum Wil­son was nearly dumped on the scrapheap by Coven­try be­fore his break­through.

For­mer Sky Blues boss Steven Press­ley re­vealed: “He was very hit and miss – and lined up to be re­leased.”

Now Bournemouth striker Wil­son (above) is cel­e­brat­ing his call-up to Gareth South­gate’s Eng­land squad for the dou­ble header with USA and

Croa­tia at Wem­b­ley.

It is re­ward for his red-hot form and seven goals this term with the Cher­ries.

Wil­son, 26, has flour­ished af­ter a suc­cess­ful move from Coven­try in 2014 for £3mil­lion.

But as a trainee, he faced the exit from City’s de­vel­op­ment squad un­til Press­ley pro­moted him.

Wil­son then plun­dered 22 goals the fol­low­ing sea­son in League One be­fore mov­ing to the south coast where he has con­tin­ued to progress de­spite two se­ri­ous knee in­juries.

Press­ley said: “Cal­lum de­serves great credit for what he has come through.

“When I first ar­rived at Coven­try, he was train­ing with the de­vel­op­ment squad and was go­ing to be re­leased at the end of that sea­son.

“Af­ter the first ses­sion, me and my as­sis­tant, went over to watch the de­vel­op­ment group and im­me­di­ately Cal­lum stuck out.

“From that mo­ment on we in­volved him in the first team although in the first two months I cer­tainly wouldn’t have said he was ca­pa­ble of achiev­ing what he has.

“He has al­ways had raw and blis­ter­ing pace to un­set­tle any de­fender at any level but he was still very er­ratic.

“But the first game of the next sea­son he scored, gained con­fi­dence and be­lief – and he’s looked back.”

Wil­son, who goes gun­ning for New­cas­tle to­day, said: “Eng­land proves the hard work you put in does not go un­no­ticed and has been recog­nised.

“When I was in­jured, with so many hur­dles and ob­sta­cles, an in­ter­na­tional call-up was the last thing on my mind.”

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