Steven Gerrard has said that “it’s only a matter of time” before Jacob Ramsey gets an England call-up following his stellar performance against Leeds United on Wednesday evening.
Ramsey scored twice as Gerrard’s side drew 3-3 with Leeds at Villa Park, the first an ice-cold one-on-one effort and the second a rocket into the top corner. They were his fourth and fifth goals in the Premier League this season and, given that he’s still only 20 years of age, he now has to be counted among the best up-and-coming talents in English football.
An England youth international across several age groups, Ramsey is currently part of the under-21s set-up. Asked whether he could make the step up to senior level before long, Gerrard said: “I know the level of the England players, I’ve been around it, and have enough experience to know it’s only a matter of time, but let’s all be sensible and keep calm about it.
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“I want him to make his own headlines with his football. He is a top talent, I’m loving every moment of working with him. He is getting stronger with each game because we’re giving him the platform to express himself. He is in a wonderful place.”
When it was put to him that Ramsey could follow in his footsteps, Gerrard said: “He’s not following in anyone’s footsteps. Jacob Ramsey is Jacob Ramsey. He will be a terrific player.
“It won’t be long before the whole country is watching him I’m sure. He is right up there, let me tell you.”
Ramsey, meanwhile, was happy to admit that Gerrard has made a profound impression on him. “Since coming to the club he has given me a lot of confidence,” he said. “I grew up watching him so, now he’s the gaffer, I can only take his advice.”
Speaking in the BT Sport studio after the game, former Aston Villa man Joe Cole singled out Ramsey for praise. “Jacob Ramsey catches the eye,” he said. “He is so athletic.
“I have seen little glimpses of him before, but this is the first time I have seen him live. I am so impressed with the timing of his runs and his intelligence as well.
“I spoke to some of the Villa guys before about him and they said he is a sponge, he wants to learn and to take it all in.”
Born and raised in Birmingham, Ramsey has already been hailed as a local hero at Villa Park. Rio Ferdinand agreed with Gerrard’s assessment of his England chances, telling BT Sport: “He’s not wrong, he’s not far off. The glimpses he’s showing us at the moment, for a kid so young, with the inexperience he’s got, the lack of exposure at this level, is beautiful to see.
“He’s just another one who we’re sitting here going: ‘What’s that going to look like in two, three, four years? Where’s he going to be?’
“Stevie will be hoping it’s here, but there’ll be big, big, big clubs, far bigger than Aston Villa, with all due respect, circling and wanting that type of talent in their team, I’m sure.”
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