‘Dream come true’ – Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah passes Alan Shearer and Francis Jeffers to become England U21’s record goalscorer

Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah broke Alan Shearer and Francis Jeffers' England record
Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah broke Alan Shearer and Francis Jeffers’ England record (Picture: BT Sport)

Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah says it is a ‘dream come true’ after he passed Alan Shearer and Francis Jeffers to become England U21’s leading goalscorer.

Nketiah missed an 84th-minute penalty before coolly chipping in a record 14th goal at this level four minutes later as England beat Turkey 2-1 on Tuesday night.

The victory saw England book their place at next year’s U21 European Championships.

Nketiah, 21, said: ‘It is an amazing feeling. To get the record and be alongside those names and players is a dream come true.

‘It’s a proud moment for me and my family. Hopefully I can add to that total as well.’

England U21 manager, Aidy Boothroyd, added to BT Sport: ‘Eddie Nketiah is in esteemed company with Alan Shearer.

Nketiah helped England beat Turkey 2-1
Nketiah helped England beat Turkey 2-1 (Picture: Getty)

‘He is a terrific player and I genuinely think if he can have the career Alan has had he will have done really well!’

England took the lead at Molineux through Huseyin Turkmen’s own goal, which was deflected from Ryan Sessegnon’s cross.

Sheffield United goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale impressed for England, keeping out Halil Dervisoglu’s penalty, but the Turkey striker netted a consolation late on.

On England’s performance, Boothroyd said: ‘I am pleased we have qualified but we as a group can do better than what we showed.

‘I thought tonight we didn’t show the football we are used to seeing on a regular basis. There were snippets of it, but you have to give credit to the opponents.

‘In terms of tinkering I have a really good idea of the core of the squad. November (final qualifying games) is a key time for us to get the lads together and make sure we are even better in our preparation and even better in our performances and finish qualifying on a high.’

Aidy Boothroyd's side have booked their place at the U21 European Championships
Aidy Boothroyd’s side have booked their place at the U21 European Championships (Picture: Getty)

The group stages of the U21 European Championships will take place in March and the knockout stage will be played from May 31 to June 6.

Nketiah has made 43 appearances for Arsenal’s first-team, featuring in all four of the Gunners’ Premier League matches so far this season.

Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal side face Manchester City this weekend.

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