Dominic Calvert-Lewin admitted it was the “stuff of dreams” as England’s support act passed their auditions at Wembley.
Everton striker Calvert-Lewin scored on his England debut with a goal for his tenth of the season while Conor Coady celebrated his first international goal with so much joy as he reminded everyone what it means to wear the shirt.
Calvert-Lewin said: “It’s a shame there are no fans here to celebrate it and my family could have been here – it’s bittersweet in that sense – but to score on my debut is the stuff of dreams.
“I would say it is my best goal of the season. I have worked very hard to get here and it felt like a long road but I’m very happy to be here and have the chance to score on my debut.
“I’ll be keeping my shirt and putting it on the mantle.”
Calvert-Lewin immediately looked ready for England duty and admitted he is now dreaming of another chance in the Nations League games with Belgium and Denmark.
“I don’t know what coming off early suggests but I’ll be ready to step in if needed,” said Calvert-Lewin.
“I felt comfortable. The lads have welcomed me in and I felt comfortable from the moment I walked through the door. That helped when you step on the pitch and the main objective was to enjoy myself.”
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Coady added: “I’m in shock. It will live with me forever. It will be on repeat in my house for my kids. It’s an amazing night.
“To play with these players is incredible, whether wearing the armband or not. The feeling of it, everything about playing here at Wembley, is sensational and it is a night I’ll never ever forget.”
England boss Gareth Southgate said: “Dominic is in such a good moment, he held the ball up well all night, linked the play, it was a really good performance and capped off by what sends any centre forward off home happy, a really well taken goal.
Does Dominic Calvert-Lewin deserve to keep his place vs Belgium? Have your say here
“Conor made me feel happy just sitting next to him yesterday. It was a special night for him, his family and he took the armband over as the game wore on and I wouldn’t have hesitated giving it to him from the start but Kieran Trippier was the most experienced player.”
Southgate also confirmed that Jadon Sancho and Tammy Abraham have rejoined the group after reporting up late for breaking coronavirus protocols but Ben Chilwell has been ill, although all three tested negative.
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