Matt Ritchie has been a huge success at Newcastle since signing on for £10M from AFC Bournemouth in the summer, when he was essentially a replacement for Andros Townsend who joined Crystal Palace because he wanted to keep playing in the Premier League.
Matt is a Scottish International and qualifies because his dad is a Scot born in Edinburgh and the 27 year-old made his first appearance for Scotland against Northern Ireland in March of last year at Hampden Park, after being called up by Gordon Strachan.
Matt Ritchie in action against Denmark
Since then he has made 13 appearances for Scotland with 3 goals and the right winger is likely to start the game against England at Wembley on Friday, in a World Cup qualifying game.
Matt has admitted this will be the biggest game of his life.
Here’s what Matt Ritchie has said in the Mirror:
“My dad, who is from Edinburgh, used to say, ‘One day son, you’ll play for Scotland’. I had that from a very young age all the time.”
“The manager Gordon Strachan called and said, ‘Are you Scottish? Do you feel Scottish?’ The answer was yes, yes. I’ve loved it ever since.”
“I’ve been to Wembley before, for club games, but this will be the biggest game of my career – if, hopefully, I’m involved.”
“You can make history in these games as a team. To qualify you need a bit of luck, a special moment — Ireland beat Germany at the Aviva Stadium. No one expected it.”
“As long as we work hard and be the best we can be you can’t look around at neighbours. We have work ethic and quality in the group. A bit of everything.”
“England have top, top Premier League footballers but we have quality too.”
“We have good young talent. There is also hunger to achieve something. It will be a tough test but we’ll love it.”
It should be a game England can win on Friday under interim manager Gareth Southgate, but you never know these days.
Big shocks can happen as we saw in the US Presidential election yesterday.