CARDIFF, Wales (AP) — Cardiff midfielder Rubin Colwill was included in Wales’ European Championship squad on Sunday after just 191 minutes of senior football.
The 19-year-old Colwill was the surprise name in the final 26-man squad captained by Gareth Bale and containing the likes of Aaron Ramsey, Daniel James, Ethan Ampadu and Joe Rodon.
“He’s been a breath of fresh air since he’s come in,” Wales caretaker manager Robert Page said about Colwill. “He’s really impressed me, he’s got a presence and maybe something we’ve not got in the middle of the park.”
There are eight survivors from the group which reached the Euro 2016 semifinals in France — Bale, Ramsey, Ben Davies, Chris Gunter, Danny Ward, Joe Allen, Jonny Williams and Wayne Hennessey.
But it is the selection of Colwill, who began the season playing academy football and did not make his senior Cardiff debut until February, that will raise the eyebrows.
Colwill has made just six Cardiff appearances, with just over three hours under his belt in the second-tier Championship for Mick McCarthy’s Bluebirds.
Wales plays its opening match against Switzerland in Baku on June 12. Italy and Turkey are also in Group A.
Goalkeepers: Wayne Hennessey (Crystal Palace), Danny Ward (Leicester), Adam Davies (Stoke)
Defenders: Connor Roberts (Swansea), Neco Williams (Liverpool), Chris Gunter (Charlton), Joe Rodon (Tottenham), Ethan Ampadu (Chelsea), Chris Mepham (Bournemouth), James Lawrence (St Pauli), Ben Cabango (Swansea), Ben Davies (Tottenham), Rhys Norrington-Davies (Sheffield United)
Midfielders: Joe Allen (Stoke), Joe Morrell (Luton), Matthew Smith (Manchester City), Jonny Williams (Cardiff), Aaron Ramsey (Juventus), Dylan Levitt (Manchester United), Rubin Colwill (Cardiff), Harry Wilson (Liverpool)