12 June 2012

Ghana: Danny Welbeck Expresses No Regret - For Choosing England Over Ghana

Photo: Chris Ricco/Backpagepix
Asamoah Gyan, left, and Kevin Prince Boateng of Ghana celebrate their team's win.

Manchester United striker Danny Welbeck has no regrets about choosing to play for England ahead of Ghana as he prepares for Euro 2012, his first major tournament.

Manchester-born Danny Welbeck has Ghanian parents but believes it was a "natural progression" for him to move into the senior England squad after playing at various youth levels. That faith has been justified as Welbeck scored his first senior England goal against Belgium in the final warm-up international at Wembley before the Euros begin.

Welbeck said: "It (the chance to play for Ghana) was basically when I was 14. But I'd been playing for England at Under-16s so felt it was a natural progression to move up into the senior squad."

He added: "I played for England at Under-16s, 17s, 18s, 19s, 21s and it was so natural for me to make that move into the senior squad and I was delighted when I did that.

"Now to get that first goal for England is something I've been looking forward to since I was a little kid. I'm looking to build on that and get more goals under my belt and more caps as well."

It is a relief to Welbeck that he will fly out to Poland with the England squad after the Manchester United striker suffered an ankle injury at the tail-end of the domestic season against Manchester City.

He said: "At times I was thinking 'maybe I won't be able to make it' but I'm glad the manager (Roy Hodgson) kept faith in me and I was always ready to go once I was called upon.

"When I suffered the injury against City, I did initially fear the worst. That night I went home and all sorts of emotions went through my head. I didn't know what was happening until I had the scan in the morning. At that point, it was very down-heartening but luckily I've come back from that and it wasn't as bad as I first feared."

Danny Welbeck played 55 minutes against Belgium and is confident he will have the necessary sharpness by the time England face France in Donetsk on June 11.

He said: "The match fitness is definitely coming along. I've had a few training sessions under my belt and had 55 minutes against Belgium. It's coming along and I'm just really looking forward to building on that before the first game next week."

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