Bothroyd delight at call
Cardiff striker Jay Bothroyd could not hide his excitement after linking up with England for the first time ahead of the friendly with France.
Last Updated: 15/11/10 5:53pm
Jay Bothroyd could not hide his excitement after linking up with England for the first time ahead of the friendly with France
The Cardiff City striker was handed his maiden call by Fabio Capello over the weekend.
The 28-year-old is the first player from England's second-level to be handed a call-up since David Nugent in 2007.
And he admits he was shocked to get the call, telling Sky Sports News: "It is obviously surprising playing in the Championship, but I am over the moon and it was the best day of my career and I am happy to be here.
"I didn't think about it at the start of the season and I just wanted to get on the scoresheet a bit more, but when I got the call I was surprised.
"Playing with world-class players is terrific, in the Championship it is different - but training today it was great and enjoyable."
Bothroyd insists that there are a number of players in the Championship who could make the step up.
"There are a few players that have played in the Championship, Andy Carroll was there six months ago and is now here, so there are players there capable of playing at a higher level," he said.
The former Arsenal trainee is clear that he needs to be on top of his game if he wants to make his debut on Wednesday against France.
"When you meet up with players like Stevie G [Gerrard] and Rio [Ferdinand], you have to step up and prove your worth and it was enjoyable today, and if I get on, on Wednesday, it would be a great day for me," he continued.
"If I get on the pitch, I would be delighted and we will see what happens. I am 28, I still don't feel a day over 20, but I have got the experience of travelling around, I have been to Italy [playing for Perugia] and I am more mature now."
Bothroyd admits that his career is very much back on track after he left Arsenal without making a first-team appearance.
"When I was younger, I made a massive mistake and you try and learn from them," he said.
"Arsenal is a great club managed by a great manager and I was disheartened to leave but I have had a long journey but I think I am back on track now and to make the England squad is great.
"There have been lots of down sides but the last few years I have knuckled down and I have made a conscious effort to change my life on-and-off the field."
Bothroyd says Capello has welcomed him into the squad, saying: "I had a little chat with him and Franco [Baldini], I speak a bit of broken Italian, but they have been great with me and congratulated me and told me to enjoy it."