Tyler Roberts: West Brom forward commits international future to Wales

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West Brom striker Tyler Roberts commits future to Wales

West Bromwich Albion's 18-year-old striker Tyler Roberts says his international future is with Wales, despite being eligible for England.

Gloucester-born Roberts, on loan at Shrewsbury, qualifies for Wales through his grandfather and has been capped at Under-17 and Under-19 levels.

"It's a decision that was made a long time ago," he told BBC Wales Sport.

"With everything that goes on in Welsh football, I'm proud to say that I play for them."

He added: "Hopefully I can make my debut for them.

"It would be amazing for my family, for my grandfather.

"It's always nice to know that a manager is looking out for you and seeing how you are progressing. Hopefully I can keep doing well and get into that full squad."

Roberts is on the standby list for Wales' World Cup qualifier against the Republic of Ireland in Dublin on Friday.

Liverpool's Ben Woodburn, an Under-19 team-mate and a fellow dual-qualified player, has been called up into the senior squad for the first time.

Tyler Roberts
Tyler Roberts made his West Brom debut towards the end of the 2015-16 season

"That's a massive achievement for him," Roberts said.

"I told him well done and to just go and enjoy it. If he shows what he can do, he will be fine.

"He's a massive talent. It says it all when you come on for your first few games at Liverpool and you are scoring goals and stuff."

Wales are four points behind Republic of Ireland, who are top of World Cup qualifying Group D.

Roberts trained with Chris Coleman's squad last summer before they took part in Euro 2016, their first major tournament since 1958.

"It was a massive tournament, it boosted Welsh football massively," he added.

Roberts joined West Brom's academy at the age of seven, making his debut as a substitute against Liverpool in the Premier League in May 2016.

"That was a massive experience and a great joy for me and my family," Roberts said.

"You can't really put it into words. You are stood on the touchline, knowing you are about to come on. It's just exciting."

Tyler Roberts in action for Shrewsbury Town
Tyler Roberts has scored four goals during his loan spell with Shrewsbury Town

Roberts credited West Brom's Welsh manager Tony Pulis with helping his development.

"He's been great and he's helped me grow up a lot as well," Roberts said.

"He has high hopes for you and says if you work hard, you can make it to the top.

"That's nice to hear. The main thing is just to work hard and keep your head down and hopefully you can get there."

Having spent the first half of this season on loan at Oxford United, Roberts joined Shrewsbury, another League One side, in January.

"I came here to get more game time and obviously the team and the manager were happy to have me so it's going well," Roberts said.

"It's matured me a lot coming out on loan and being with professionals who have been in the game for how many years and learning off them and just trying to get to the level that they've been at."

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