Emile Smith Rowe: Arsenal player who saved Huddersfield Town and clinched Leeds United’s promotion earns England call-up

Arsenal forward Emile Smith Rowe has received his first senior England call-up for the World Cup qualifiers against Albania and San Marino.

Emile Smith Rowe celebrates scoring Town's second goal against West Bromwich Albion which clinched Leeds United's promotion back to the Premier League on 17 July 2020. (Picture: Bruce Rollinson)

Smith Rowe, who was on loan at Huddersfield Town only last year, had been scheduled to join up with England’s Under-21s, but instead met up with Gareth Southgate’s senior squad at St George’s Park yesterday.

The 21-year-old has been in impressive form for Arsenal this season, appearing in all their Premier League games and scoring in his third successive top-flight match in Sunday’s 1-0 home win against Watford

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Smith Rowe made 19 appearances for Huddersfield two seasons ago, scoring two goals. He joined the club in January 2020 just two months before the footballing world was halted for three months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Emile Smith Rowe: Arsenal forward and former Town loanee has joined England squad.

Even though he was thrown into a relegation fight, Smith Rowe showed his class and scored the winning goal against West Bromwich Albion that secured Town’s safety.

Then Town manager Danny Cowley spoke glowingly of the player, saying: “He could find space in a telephone box.

“He receives on the back foot, speeds the play up for you, draws and commits (opponents).”

Manchester United pair Marcus Rashford and Luke Shaw, Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse and Chelsea’s Mason Mount did not report for England duty at St George’s Park yesterday. Rashford is focusing on regaining full fitness following his recent return from shoulder surgery and Shaw is recovering from concussion sustained in Saturday’s Manchester derby defeat.

Huddersfield Town's Emile Smith Rowe celebrates scoring his side's second goal against West Brom (Picture: PA)

Ward-Prowse is ruled out through illness and Mount will be monitored by Southgate and his staff after undergoing dental surgery. Southgate will begin preparation for Friday’s home fixture against Albania and the following qualifier in San Marino on Monday with just 22 players.

The Three Lions are in pole position to qualify for the Qatar 2022 finals, three points clear of closest group rivals Poland with two games to play.

Four points from their final two qualifiers will guarantee England’s qualification.