The now-MLS star earned his first two international caps over the past week and also marked his debut with a goal.
Incredible last week here 2 starts a goal, assist and most importantly 2 wins ... I thank GOD for this opportunity ❤️ pic.twitter.com/TFyOJsjs1c— Giles Barnes (@GilesBarnesReal) March 31, 2015
Having revitalised his career in MLS with the Houston Dynamo, Barnes had been in discussions for some time about representing the Caribbean nation, who he is eligible for through his grandparents, before filing his one-time switch in the summer.
After the paperwork came through, the former England Under-19 international received his first call-up earlier this month for the friendlies against Venezuela and Cuba, and marked last week’s debut against the former with a goal in a 2-1 win.
Last night’s 3-0 win over Cuba also saw him pick up an assist and, speaking to the Jamaican Observer about his successful start, revealed that he had experienced few problems attempting to fit into the squad.
"I've known a lot of the Boyz for a long time, so it was easy for me to fit in,” he said. “I've known some of the Boyz from playing in England -- me and Wes [Morgan] go back 12 years and he's my roommate as well and he has looked after me.
“Obviously, I've played with Jermaine Taylor [at Houston], Je-Vaughn Watson [previously at Houston], me and Mattocks are friends off the pitch as well, so it is pretty simple to get in with the Boyz and they have made me feel welcome.”
Once labelled “the next Theo Walcott” while at Derby, Barnes’ career in England might have failed to reach the heights expected due to a serious of injuries but he has since morphed into one of the top forwards in MLS, amassing 21 goals since arriving in August 2012.
As well as thriving in a more advanced role, the fan favourite has also overcome his past fitness problems to set a single-season club record for outfield minutes in 2014, logging 3,028 while starting all 34 games.
That bodes well for Jamaica, who will compete in both the Gold Cup and Copa America this coming summer and thus need their new star man to be at the top of his game.