Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope is hoping to feature more in games in order to remain in the heart of England manager Gareth Southgate as he plans for Nations League finals this summer.
The shotstopper explained how England boss reached out to him following an injury – dislocated shoulder – he sutained in Aberdeen in July, moments after returning from the World Cup with the Three Lions. He adds that he needs regular football to stay in the fit for both Three Lions and Burnley.
“After I got injured and it had all calmed down after a couple of weeks, he rang me and had a great conversation, so that was a nice lift at a difficult time,” he said, according to Burnley Express.
“It was great to hear from him, and throughout the World Cup his man-management was top drawer.
“It was really nice to get that call.
“Fingers crossed [I’m still in his thoughts], you have to play games to stay in his thoughts and that’s what I have to look to do from now until the end of the season.”
Pope now has a tough task to get Burnley jersey first, before he finally returns to the national squad:
“Yes, it is [an amazing situation]. Not many people expect that at Burnley or anywhere in the Premier League really.
“That’s the situation we’ve got, and it’s up to us to decide who can play and who gets the shirt.
“We’ve all got to be pushing each other every day.
“There’s great banter between the three of us and we have five senior goalkeepers now with Adam Legzdins and Anders Lindegaard.
“We have high quality all the place – the lads in training don’t stand a chance!”