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Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson believes Eberechi Eze will be good enough to play for the England senior side but is not yet ready to make the step up, according to Sky Sports
Eze grabbed his third goal of the season in Saturday’s 1-0 win over Wolves to continue his fine start at Selhurst Park following a summer switch from QPR.
The 22-year-old is eligible to play for Nigeria but is currently part of Aidy Boothroyd’s England Under-21 squad, although he missed the recent games in November with an injury.
When Hodgson was in charge of the national team, he had to convince Jack Grealish to pick the Three Lions over the Republic of Ireland and the Aston Villa captain has forced his way into Gareth Southgate’s plans ahead of the Euro’s later this year.
And with Eze now in a similar situation, the Palace manager said: “I would like to think that like Jack Grealish before him, whom I found myself in a situation of needing to speak to, to try to persuade him he was good enough to play for England and that he should perhaps give it a chance, I would certainly say the same to Eberechi Eze if I was in that sort of situation.
“Is he ready at the moment? I wouldn’t think so. I think there are so many players in his position and of his type, it would be very bold of me to suggest he could go in front of them.
“He is a member of the under-21 side and I would like to think and hope he keeps his position there and that he keeps improving and keeps in the eye line of Gareth Southgate and the other England coaches while he is working there.
“And at the same time of course his performances are monitored in the Premier League, but I’m more than happy with the progress he is making and the difference he has made as a player to our team.
“I think he will need a bit more of that before we start trying to raise him up even higher because already he has taken quite a big step.”
This post was written by Chinedu Ibeakanma.
The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.