Emile Smith Rowe: 'I ran downstairs and told my mum' after surprise England call-up

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Smith Rowe: The first England call-up has not yet sunk in.

Emile Smith Rowe, Arsenal forward, said that receiving his first call-up from England was "very emotional".

Smith Rowe was the last to be called for the World Cup qualifiers in Albania and San Marino, following the withdrawals James Ward-Prowse and Marcus Rashford.

It was a wonderful moment for me and my family. I ran downstairs and told my mom immediately. It was very moving. He said that they were proud of me."

Smith Rowe (21 years old) has scored in three consecutive league games for Arsenal.

He was hoping to join the Under-21 squad, but he was surprised when Gareth Southgate called him up for his first call.

England will play Albania at Wembley Friday, before finishing their qualifying campaign away from San Marino on November 15. To qualify for Qatar 2022, they need four points from these games.

Smith Rowe stated that he was "really nervous" prior to his first training session.

He said, "Of course I play against these guys every single week but for England it is always different."

"Wearing the exact same training kit and passing each other the ball - it's insane to be with these great players.

"Harry Kane, captain England, what he has done - it's crazy that he trains with me. Also, [Raheem] Sterling. Training was always going to be hard. It's still not sinking in that I'm actually here.

Croydon-born, the talent represented England at all levels from Under-16s to Under-21s. This is similar to his Arsenal team mate, Bukayo Saka.

Smith Rowe and Saka made their Arsenal debuts in 2018 in the same match. Saka, however, secured a spot in the England squad.

Smith Rowe stated, "Me and Bukayo live so close to the pitch - it makes me so happy that he plays for England every time." "It's special to be here together with him because we both came up from [the Arsenal youth academy] Hale End. It's an important moment for Arsenal and us.

The home chef makes the difference

Smith Rowe claimed that Arsenal hired a private chef to come to his house to help him change his poor eating habits.

Mikel Arteta, Arsenal's boss, stated recently that a lifestyle change was necessary to improve his performance.

Smith Rowe stated that he thought Smith was referring to my diet. To be truthful, I didn't eat as well in the past.

"I used get cramps after about 60 minutes. I was not eating well, I didn't drink enough, and before games, I wasn’t very hydrated. But, since then, I have tried to be more focused on it.

"The club has sorted me out as a chef. They have come to my home now.

"I have tried to cut down on take-out and chocolate. Now, I eat from my kitchen almost every day. The chef has a few pasta recipes that are delicious. I used to hate fish, but I now love it. I love salmon and other stuff."