Bent: Villa move helped England claims
Darren Bent has been told by England coach Fabio Capello that moving to Aston Villa has enhanced his international prospects.
Bent made the £24million switch from Sunderland last month and quickly found himself earning a rare England start against Denmark in Copenhagen.
The 27-year-old responded by scoring his second goal for his country in a 2-1 success.
Bent impressed in the main striking role ahead of Wayne Rooney in the first half and club-mate Ashley Young during the second 45 minutes.
He is also hoping Villa can provide a strong nucleus of the England side in the future via the likes of himself, Young and Stewart Downing, who also impressed on the flank.
Bent said: "Since I've moved to Villa last month everything has gone right. Fabio said that it has helped my England chances by going to Aston Villa.
"He proved that today by making me start against Denmark and I was happy with the performance and the goal.
"I never dreamed before the game that I would get the full 90 minutes in and it is a big boost.
"Of course you feel extra pressure to play and take chances with England, especially with the amount of English strikers about at the moment.
"There are still a few to come back as well. Jermain Defoe didn't even play last night and you've got Andy Carroll to come back from injury.
"It seems like there is a good fight for places but the main thing is when I get my opportunity I've got to take it and I did that.
"I was happy with the performance and hopefully there will be many more performances from me."
Bent was full of praise for the showing of Young, who produced one of his best performances in an England shirt during the second half.
He capped it by scored the winning goal, his first for his country, after latching onto Glen Johnson's pass.
Bent said: "Since I've come to Villa, Ashley has been a dream to play with.
"I thought he was fantastic when he came on and he has been the same for Villa as well.
"That is the kind of reason I went to Villa, to play with people like Ashley and Stewart Downing.
"To be fair, having four members of the Villa team in the England squad is only going to help. Can Villa form the nucleus of the England squad? I'd like to think so."