Euro 2024

June 12, 2024

England’s Wharton says he is ‘living the dream’ after shock Euro selection

England’s Wharton says he is ‘living the dream’ after shock Euro selection

England midfielder Adam Wharton said he is living the dream after securing a shock selection for Gareth Southgate’s Euro 2024 squad.

The 20-year-old has only made 16 Premier League appearances since joining Crystal Palace from Blackburn in a deal worth an initial £18 million ($23 million) in February.

However, Wharton shone in the Eagles’ storming end to the season under Oliver Glasner to earn his first senior international call-up for the tournament in Germany.

“It’s a surreal feeling, honestly. I wasn’t expecting it,” Wharton told reporters at a press conference on Wednesday.

“Obviously I have only just gone into the Premier League, it was more sort of a bonus if I did get in but I am absolutely delighted. I get to do what I love on the top stage — you can’t beat it.

“It has gone really fast. I have really enjoyed the last six months and I just want to keep playing, getting better.”

Wharton survived Southgate’s cull, as more experienced internationals such as James Maddison and Jack Grealish did not make the final 26, thanks in part to his impressive England debut as a substitute in a 3-0 win over Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The squad is, though, short on midfield options which could open the door to Wharton to feature prominently at the Euros.

“It’s just a dream come true. Every kid who plays football wants to play in the Premier League and for their country.

“(There are) unbelievable players (in the squad) and if I’m chosen to play I’m more than ready, but whoever is on the pitch will step up and perform and help the team.”

England are among the pre-tournament favourites thanks to an abundance of attacking talent, including Harry Kane, Jude Bellingham and Phil Foden.

However, the Three Lions arrive in Germany on the back of a shock 1-0 defeat by Iceland at Wembley in their final warm-up friendly.

England open their quest for a first-ever European Championship title against Serbia on Sunday before facing Denmark and Slovenia in Group C.

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