Stats say Albion's Craig Dawson is Roy's Hodgson's England answer

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Based on the Premier League's official ratings, Craig Dawson should be playing for England.

The Baggies right-back has made 15 appearances for the under-21s and also played for Team GB in the 2012 London Olympics, but he's never been capped for the senior men's team.

According to the EA Sports Player Performance Index – the official rating index of the Premier League – the 25-year-old former non-league defender should be Roy Hodgson's first pick at right-back come Euro 2016.

Removing all opinion from the decision, the rating index works with statistical measurements which become more accurate as the season progresses.

It takes into account victories, players' performances, appearances, goals scored, assists and clean sheets.

In this purely statistical England team, Dawson lines up in defence with Scott Dann (Crystal Palace), Simon Francis, and Charlie Daniels (both Bournemouth).

Jack Butland (Stoke) is in goal, while the midfield four are Mark Noble (West Ham), Dele Alli (Spurs), Danny Drinkwater (Leicester) and Ross Barkley (Everton).

Tottenham's Harry Kane and Leicester's Jamie Vardy start up front. There are no players from Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal, Liverpool or Chelsea.

Albion's assistant head coach Dave Kemp wasn't overly surprised by the revelation.


Dawson is highly-thought of at the Baggies and penned a new contract just last month.

Last Sunday's victory over Manchester United was his 100th appearance for the club.

He was forced off in the 55th minute of that game but, up until then, the mild-mannered right-back had played every minute of Premier League football this season.

So is the former Rochdale man underrated?


"He probably is around the country," said Kemp. "He's athletic, a good defender, offers something going forward. He should be on someone's scouting list."

Hodgson is more likely to take Liverpool's Nathaniel Clyne and Tottenham's Kyle Walker to the Euros at right-back.

But Dawson can play centre-back too and that versatility gives him an outside chance of making the squad.

"People will notice him now because he's played 100 games and people will start seeing him as a fixture," said Kemp. "I thought his best game since we've been here was the Palace game.

"I thought he was excellent that game. He'll grow in stature as well having reached 100.

"Getting in that team he'll grow and become better for it."

Dawson was unable to break into the team at centre-back when he initially joined the Baggies.

But Pulis converted him to right-back and now his name is one of the first on the teamsheet. A humble man off the pitch, Dawson started his career at Northern Premier League side Radcliffe Borough, but Pulis has confidence in his ability.

Whether that confidence is eventually replicated by a call from Hodgson, who knows.

"That's beyond us," said Kemp.

"I don't know about that or if he's even in their thoughts.

"But if you keep playing well and people start taking notice and you start clocking up the numbers, good things happen to you."

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