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Pride Of Lions For Pope

Clarets goalkeeper rightly happy with England debut

8 June 2018

Nick Pope was happy with his England debut and filled with pride at representing the Three Lions as he added his name to the Clarets’ international roll of honour.

Pope won his first England cap after coming off the bench 20 minutes into the second half of Thursday night’s warm-up win over Costa Rica.

The Burnley goalkeeper saw out a clean sheet as Gareth Southgate’s men won 2-0 at Elland Road to continue their smooth preparation for the World Cup Finals in Russia.

And Pope couldn’t have done any more to prove his credentials after being told by the England boss the day before the game that he would feature and become the 29th Burnley player to become a full England international.

“That was nice, to help prepare myself mentally and get ready to go,” said Pope, who replaced Jack Butland as Southgate made sure no-one would head to Russia without a cap to their name.

“I was happy. When you come off the bench as a goalkeeper for the boys in front it’s important that you show confidence and you look like you’re prepared and play how you should play, so I was pleased.

“I was immensely proud and privileged to make my England debut and be part of this England group.”

Pope and the rest of the England squad were given some downtime on Friday before they report back to St George’s Park over the weekend to continue their build-up to the tournament in Russia.

The 23-man squad will then fly out on Tuesday to their base in north-west Russia with their opening Group G game against Tunisia in Volgograd on Monday, 18 June.

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