By David Woods

18th Mar, 2021 | 7:40am

Dorsett: Patrick Bamford could be set for first England call-up

Gareth Southgate is considering giving Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford his first call-up, according to Sky Sports reporter Rob Dorsett.

Dorsett said, “Patrick Bamford is in Gareth Southgate’s thinking for a first #England call up when he announces the squad tomorrow, I’ve been told.”

An England call-up would mean a lot to Bamford.

Back in November, he was talked about as being in with a shot at the squad but he missed out.

In an interview with the Times teammate Kalvin Phillips said, “Pat said he couldn’t sleep the other night because the squad was getting announced the next day and he thought he could have a chance.”

Leeds fans will be hoping he didn’t have another sleepless night last night with the Fulham game tomorrow.

Meanwhile, the Guardian claims that Luke Ayling is also being considered.

The England manager names his squad tomorrow for the three upcoming World Cup qualifiers.

Ayling has never played for England at any level and is a surprise name in the frame for a call-up after his fine form for Leeds this season.

The Guardian wrote, “Southgate will consider giving first call-ups to the Leeds pair, Luke Ayling and Patrick Bamford, and recalling West Ham’s Jesse Lingard.”

Dream shot for Ayling and Bamford

Bamford has been on the periphery of the England squad since impressing in the Premier League.

This could represent his last chance of getting into the reckoning for the delayed Euros this summer.

Ayling getting in would be an even bigger surprise.

England have a number of options at right-back with Trent Alexander-Arnold, Kyle Walker, Kieran Trippier, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Reece James all seemingly ahead of Ayling.

Just the fact that he’s being named as competition for these players shows how far he’s come since he was rejected by Arsenal as a youth player.

Leeds bought him for less than £1m in 2016 and he’s one of the players who have seen their careers take a massive upward tick since Marcelo Bielsa took over.

Ayling has played at right-back and at centre-back successfully this season, but even he must have thought an England call-up was a pipe-dream at the age of 29.

It must still be an outside shot.

The Euros are only a few months away and Southgate isn’t short of options on the right.

However, irrespective of whether he makes the squad or not, the fact that he’s being talked about as a potential England player shows how far his stock has risen in recent months.

In other Leeds United news, Bamford fit ahead of Fulham clash – Guardian