With the World Cup coming up in a few weeks, there is certainly a conversation to be had about international call-ups.
Kieran Trippier and Nick Pope have already collected enough England experience to be almost certain contenders to be named in the final squad for Qatar, but the Magpies have another player who could be a dark horse for Gareth Southgate’s selection next month.
The England manager was at St James’ Park at the weekend to witness Newcastle’s 4-0 demolition of Aston Villa, something Callum Wilson would have been delighted to learn considering he was the standout performer in the clash.
Wilson secured a brace and registered one assist, as well as making two key passes despite only taking 27 touches over his 87-minute performance, proving that he was exceptional in his delivery of every moment he was in possession of the ball. It led to the striker earning the highest rating on the pitch (8.5) according to SofaScore.
This performance was nothing new for the talented goal machine this season who has scored six goals and delivered two assists over nine appearances with a goal contribution every 91 minutes so far, which is something Southgate will struggle to ignore.
In fact, it has now been confirmed that Wilson has made it into the Three Lions manager’s 55-man longlist for the World Cup which will be a huge confidence booster for the 30-year-old who has struggled with injury problems over his career.
Since the beginning of last season (2021/2022), Wilson has sustained three separate injuries which has seen him miss 30 fixtures for Newcastle as a result. However, there is no denying the quality and attacking threat he offers when he is fit.
Overall, Wilson – who was dubbed “incredible” by Eddie Howe – has 118 career goals and 46 assists over 317 appearances with a goal contribution every 146 minutes which proves that despite his struggles he is a consistent and reliable performer in front of goal when he is available for selection.
“For me, I’m just focusing on my performances. Game in game out, little by little, trying to add goals but also all-round performance I think I’m trying to improve.
“Hopefully, it catches the eye of the England manager — that’s my dream to play at a World Cup.
“I remember years ago I was in Qatar, doing rehab from an ACL injury, and they were building stadiums out there. I did say I’ll come back, I’ve got one eye on that.”
With that being said, Wilson is currently the third most in-form English striker behind only Harry Kane and Ivan Toney, so it should be a no-brainer for Southgate to include the talented striker in his World Cup plans.