"Still cuts me deep" - Dominic Calvert-Lewin remembers the tweets from Sheffield United fans that motivate him to shine for Everton and England

Dominic Calvert-Lewin was a young man on the verge of a dream move to the Premier League when he pulled out his phone, opened Twitter and was very quickly brought back down to earth.

By Danny Hall
Sunday, 28th March 2021, 12:00 pm

The striker had played a grand total of 12 games for his boyhood club Sheffield United but it had been enough for Everton - on the word of their coach David Unsworth, formerly of United - to make an offer. There were rumours of a bid being tabled which would make young Calvert-Lewin a million-pound player.

"I had Sheffield United fans saying on Twitter: 'We'll carry him there'. They were wanting me to go and as a boyhood United fan, that still cuts me deep a little bit.

"It's not how I envisaged my Sheffield United career going, but one thing I would say to young players is, you flip that on its head and use it as motivation to prove people wrong.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

"And that's what I've always tried to do. I went to Everton and the higher up you get, you're under more and more scrutiny as a player. So you have to learn to deal with it.

"As a young player you prepare technically and tactically, but nothing prepares you for the mental battles you come across and that comes in all walks of life.

"You're a young man making your way in football and life but then you have certain pressures, which might come from your family or it might be football related and nothing can prepare you for that.

England's Dominic Calvert-Lewin celebrates scoring their side's second goal against San Marino: Carl Recine/PA Wire.

"You sometimes see young boys targeted in the media and no-one really knows how they truly feel, you're just known as the footballer.

"But you're a human being at the end of the day and you go through the same battles as everyone else. But as footballers, you get exposed to it on a grander scale and much earlier in life, too."

The Sheffield-born striker was speaking on Sky's Super6 podcast and has gone from strength to strength after leaving United for Everton. He made his England debut last October, scoring against Wales, and will hope to win his latest cap this evening in Albania after two goals against San Marino in midweek.