Robbie Fowler compares his long wait for an England cap to Rashford's rapid rise

Ex-Liverpool and England star was speaking to Team 33 at the launch of Eir Sport

BY Raf Diallo 15:20 Sunday 10 July 2016, 15:20 10 Jul 2016

The eir Sport Pack is now free to all existing and new eir broadband customers. Customers can access this content via their TV platform or the device of their choice. This equates to €300 of value free to every eir broadband customer. Pictured today Robbie Fowler ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Robbie Fowler's start to life as a professional footballer was pretty sensational if you think about it now.

In his first 13 fixtures for Liverpool, the Merseysider scored 12 goals, which needless to say, is an outstanding return.

He burst onto the scene in 1993-94 and also helped England win the 1993 European under-18 Championship with Paul Scholes, Sol Campbell, Gary Neville and Nicky Butt - something he talks about in our Team 33 interview which you can listen to below - but it wasn't until March 1996 that he would win his first senior international cap.

Compare that with Marcus Rashford, for example, who has scored goals aplenty for Manchester United but within fewer than six months was in a Euro 2016 squad.

Fowler, of course, emerged in a much more competitive era for English strikers with Alan Shearer, Teddy Sheringham and Ian Wright among those already on the pecking order.

Does Fowler believe he might have been fast-tracked quicker had he emerged today rather than in the '90s?

"Without a shadow," he replied when that was put to him at the launch of Eir Sport. 

"I scored nearly 100 goals before I made my England debut. But if I'm being totally honest, there were more players to choose from back then. The standard of players was quality and obviously nothing against Rashford. He's a very good player.

The England team celebrate after beating Turkey in the final: (back row, l-r). Robbie Fowler bottom row third from right. Bottom row second from left is Paul Scholes. Gary Neville on the bottom right, while Sol Campbell and Nicky Butt are third and first from right in the back-row Picture by: Rui Vieira / EMPICS Sport

"I probably would have liked him to play a few more games and got in that way. But you can't argue with his record. He probably deserved getting in there because he was scoring goals and playing well. [But] I think he probably should have waited a little bit more.

"But the manager felt he was ready at that time. There's no doubt that he was ready but fair play to him. He's done well and he looked one of the players who probably hurt [the Euro 2016 opposition] most when he came on."

Fowler sees a bright future for Rashford and going back to his own time, he added that: "If you're English and you're playing 10 Premier League games, then you're more or less getting picked for the squad. So it was maybe a little bit harder back then."

Fowler also spoke about the 1993 European under-18 title win and dealing with criticism as a young player based on the recent experience of Raheem Sterling.

You can listen to the full chat with Robbie Fowler on the podcast player or on iTunes:


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