Eddie Howe has told Dan Burn not to give up on his England dream ahead of Newcastle’s game against Fulham this afternoon.
The 6ft 6in defender was on the fringes of Gareth Southgate’s squad ahead of last year’s World Cup in Qatar, along with clubmates Nick Pope, Kieran Trippier and Callum Wilson, but ultimately failed to make the cut.
However, since then the 30-year-old’s form, which he capped off with a first goal for the club in the 2-0 Carabao Cup quarter-final win over Leicester on Tuesday night, has been outstanding and Howe is confident he can still make his mark at international level .
Howes said: “Dan is probably quietly very motivated by that. I don’t think it’s something he would necessarily communicate to me or to his teammates, maybe if pushed in the media.
“But I think he’s very much of the opinion that his performances really speak for themselves, and that he would hope they would be enough to be in the fight.
“For me, he was very unlucky not to go to the World Cup, he didn’t put pressure on Gareth, but I think he would have been very close. He just missed it I think, and he’s continued that form.
“Thanks to Dan for carrying that form. The World Cup is over and that dream has faded, but there is still time for him and his adaptability and versatility is potentially a real road and route to England.”
Blyth-born Burn returned to the club that let him go as an 11-year-old after a £13 million move from Brighton last January and has been a big hit, especially since he got into a stingy defense at left-back, a role in which he is likely to continue against Fulham in the Premier League on Sunday.
Howe said, “If you’re going to sign a player of Dan’s age and with that profile, you hope it goes the way his story goes. I agree with you, I think he’s improved.”
“He has done very, very well in whatever position I asked him to play, he embraced everything the club stands for and I think he has a winning mentality.
“He’s not just here to play for Newcastle, he wants to achieve something, so it’s been a really good move for us.
“He’s very humble, he’s very easy to manage, to be honest. He’s very low maintenance from my perspective and he’s also a top player, so it’s definitely a great mix from a manager’s perspective.”