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Dominic Solanke is playing just like Harry Kane… he deserves a second England cap, says Bournemouth legend Daniels

DEADLY Dominic Solanke deserves an England recall.

And the red-hot striker’s former Bournemouth team-mate Charlie Daniels is far from the only one to think so.

Dominic Solanke has been tipped for an England call-up

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Dominic Solanke has been tipped for an England call-upCredit: Getty

Cherries ace Solanke’s one senior England cap was as a sub in a Wembley friendly with Brazil in November 2017, when he was playing for today’s visitors Liverpool.

The Three Lions’ next game, on March 23, is at home to the South Americans.

And Solanke, 26, who as the first Bournemouth star to win a Prem Player of the Month award last month, is the highest-scoring Englishman in the top flight with 12 goals in 19 games.

Former defender Daniels, 37, said: “Dom should be in the England squad if you’re talking about stats and merit.

“He’s been in the system before, which we know Gareth Southgate loves.

“You have Ivan Toney coming back, Ollie Watkins, Callum Wilson, so there’s plenty of competition.

“But if you’re looking at players on form, Dom’s right up there.”

England have searched for someone to provide true back-up to Harry Kane as a central striker.

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Daniels knows how good Solanke’s credentials are after playing with and against the Three Lions skipper.

He went from Chingford grassroots club Ridgeway Rovers to Spurs’ Academy, a path Kane followed a few years later, and was in the Leyton Orient side that welcomed the young Spurs striker on loan in 2011.

Daniels said: “Dom combines the role of a No 9 and a No 10, a bit like Harry does.

“He wants to stretch the game in behind but can also receive it to feet. His movement’s the same as Harry’s and they’ve the same intelligence.

“They both hold the ball up, they’re quite strong. Harry’s a more natural finisher but you can see the similarities.”

Few would have said that during Solanke’s early struggles at Bournemouth.

After arriving from Liverpool for £19million in January 2019, he did not score a Prem goal for 18 months.

When he managed a flurry of three at the end of the pandemic-disrupted 2019-20 season, it was not enough to stop the Cherries being relegated.

The in-form Bournemouth striker has 12 league goals this season

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The in-form Bournemouth striker has 12 league goals this seasonCredit: Getty

Daniels, who left the club that summer, said: “He was still young and the price tag was maybe on his mind, too.

“He had to get used to new team-mates, a new style of play, a new way of living.

“It wasn’t anything to do with his effort or professionalism. His all-round play was very good.

“But ultimately, as a No 9, you are going to get judged on goals.

“Probably the best thing that could have happened  to  him  was the club  being  relegated.

“The following season he was able to have a full year in the Championship and then really take ownership of that No 9 shirt. He started building that confidence up again.”

Solanke’s 29 Championship goals in 2021-22 fired Bournemouth back into the top flight and he played a big part in keeping them there last season.

But he has found a whole new level in this campaign under  new Bournemouth boss Andoni Iraola.

Cherries legend Charlie Daniels believes Solanke deserves a Three Lions call-up

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Cherries legend Charlie Daniels believes Solanke deserves a Three Lions call-upCredit: Getty

He is becoming the player everyone — including Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp — hoped he would be when he was named player of the tournament at the 2017 Under-20 World Cup won by England.

Solanke’s great form this season has helped turn Cherries’ campaign around.  

After just one league win in the first 11 games, came a seven-match unbeaten run and Solanke has scored more than any other Prem  player since November 1.

He also became a dad for the first time in September, the same month he signed a contract extension to 2027.

Daniels, now lead coach of Watford’s Under-21s, added: “Even when I was at Bournemouth, you could tell there was a top striker in there.

“For him to go through a bit of trouble and come out the other end and reap the rewards is fantastic.

“It’s testament to him and his professionalism and it is also a testament to the club as well, for sticking with him.

“A lot of other clubs would have cashed in or given up on him.

Solanke's one previous England cap came against Brazil in 2017

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Solanke’s one previous England cap came against Brazil in 2017Credit: Arfa Griffiths – The Sun

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“Dom has what he was searching for now  probably — a home, a club that loves him, a club that wants him to do well and that believes in him.

“Strikers want a bit of love and that’s what he is getting.

“Long may it continue. I really hope he does get in that England squad and push Bournemouth up the table.”

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