If anybody knows what it’s like to have a long and successful England career, it’s Sol Campbell.
Andy Carroll – in action against Fulham yesterday
And Sol has some wise words for young Andy Carroll today, as he points out the easy thing is to get into the England side, but the difficult thing is to stay there, over the long term.
And the former England great says he had England longevity, because he surrounded himself with good people, and he wants to see the 21 year-old very promising youngster at Newcastle do the same thing.
Sol said today:
”He’s come on leaps and bounds. Everyone knows he has the raw talent.” “People at the club have to make sure they nurture that and channel it in the right areas.”“And he has to say, ‘What do I want out of my career?’ “
“He works hard but there are a few things he’s going to have to work at over the next two or three years.” “That will determine how long he has in his England career. It’s not about how you get into the England team, it’s if you can stay there.”
“You have to be humble and respect where you are in football. You have to be willing to listen and learn and train hard.” “You have to be like a sponge and take in all the information – the right information.”
“You have to concentrate on football and let everything else float around.” “The pressure on young players has escalated, you wonder where it’s going to end.” ”I can understand how people see this club as a goldfish bowl because it is full-on.”
The implication form Sol is that Andy is not surrounding himself with the right people, at least over the last couple of years, when he has continued to get himself into trouble off the field of play.
But with Sol at the club and Andy having a chance to mix with some of England’s best and most successful footballers soon, we have to hope that Andy learns from them all, and learns quickly.
That for Andy’s own good and also that of Newcatsle United and England.