England call-up another chance to learn, says James Ward-Prowse

Fresh from being handed his first senior England call-up, Southampton's James Ward-Prowse has described it as an opportunity to increase his "knowledge".

Learning from others is his hope: "I can't wait to draw on every ounce of knowledge from other players who have been in the group before".

Bright words from Saints' gifted young midfielder, who at 22 has already made 163 appearances for his club.

Not only that, but representing England at various levels has seen him rack up 45 games ahead of a potential senior cap at the Signal Iduna Park later on today.

In some ways it's unfortunate that playing time under Mauricio Pochettino and Ronald Koeman was limited - who knows how early his debut for country could've came?

That hasn't been the case this season however; Claude Puel obviously sees his determination to play, giving him the green light to become part of the starting eleven.

Positive Puel

Wembley's arch overlooked a memorable EFL Cup final this year, where Saints' Frenchman entrusted Ward-Prowse with a place on the team sheet -- no-one in the South-coast faithful was disappointed.

It's a sign of how far the Portsmouth-born man has come since his league debut at The Etihad; fresh-faced, scrawny but confident he put in a class shift only for Samir Nasri to claim all three points for the Manchester side.

The faith shown in him by Nigel Adkins upon the team's return to the Premier League is reminiscent of Puel so far in 2017.

Even last year Ward-Prowse was given a key role in Saints' Europa League campaign, albeit a dissatisfying one.

Southgate's eye for Youth

According to his club coach, the reason for his success is that he "makes progress because he listens" - Ward-Prowse looks to take notes from the likes of Raheem Sterling and Ross Barkley.

Players who he claimed "have also come through well", going on to explain that "it is a positive that if you are doing well at a young age you'll get a chance".

Despite getting the England job on shady grounds, you'd have to say it's encouraging that Gareth Southgate is using his years as Under-21's coach to pick young talent.

Nathan Redmond, like Ward-Prowse, could see his first senior England test when facing Germany tonight.