Ben White believes he would not be where he is today if it were not for his mum and dad.

The 23-year-old is preparing for his first major tournament at the Euros, with England’s campaign kicking off at Wembley on Sunday against Romania.

It has been a whirlwind five years for White, who had successful loan spells in League Two with Newport County, League One with Peterborough United and in the Championship with Leeds United last season.

This campaign was his debut season in the Premier League for Albion where he made the joint-most appearances in the league with Yves Bissouma (36).

However, White admits none of it would have been possible without his mum and his dad.

He said: “It is literally all down to my mum and dad. I definitely wouldn’t be where I am right now if they hadn’t helped me along the way with all the stuff that they did.

“I gave my mum a ring straight away and she was crying on the phone again, but it was obviously an unbelievable moment, but unfortunately I did not get to share it with them as I had a long journey home.”

White had to overcome the odds early on in his career after being released by Southampton at the age of 16, but he was again grateful to his mum for helping him keep his dream of being a professional footballer alive.

He said: “It has always been my passion.

“The day I did get released I spoke to my mum about it and she said, ‘Do you want to be a footballer?’ And I was saying, ‘Yeah’.

“So, she got on the phone to some clubs and managed to get me some trials at different places.”

But how would White’s mum react if he does play in the Euros?

He said: “I have no idea, she is obviously so happy for me and she has seen how hard I have worked and for it to be paying off now is all that she wants to see.”

White had spoken about his shock at being called into the initial provisional 33-man squad.

But the defender admits he had not planned to be spending the summer at the Euros.

He said: “It has been very surreal, obviously I didn’t think this was going to be happening.

“I thought I would be somewhere hot like Portugal or something.

“It is mind-blowing, I didn’t expect any of this to happen, even the first bit being in the 33-man squad was enough for me.

“But to make it into the final squad was unbelievable.”

White also spoke about how the training sessions with England differ from the ones he is used to at club level with the Seagulls.

He said: “The last week has been very different to what I am used to.

“At club level, you get your rest days, and coming here this week it has been really tough with the players that are here, but it shows the level all of these players are at and I need to get to.”

He initially caught the eye of many managers and fans across the country with his performances whilst on loan at Leeds, where he played every single minute of their 46 league games and helped them to win promotion back to the top flight.

But he insists that his England call-up has been a culmination of ten years of hard work and not just the result of one impressive season.

He said: “I wasn’t made last year. I think I have worked hard for ten years and it doesn’t suddenly come in a year and you are doing well.

“I had two loans before that and played quite a few games there so that has helped me build and perform at the level that I have.”

White revealed how Southgate had briefed the squad about what it means to represent England.

He said: “We had a video and it showed everything the history of England and all of the players struggles coming through the years and it is obviously a massive. But I think it the team now is a very good group and we are looking good.”