Northern Ireland duo called up for Euro U19 qualifiers
Posted by nickogs20 on October 2, 2008
United youngsters Conor Devlin and Corry Evans have been called up by Northern Ireland for their upcoming European U19 Championship Qualifying Round matches against England, Serbia and Albania, taking the number of Reds starlets involved in this stage of the competition to six.
Devlin and Evans are part of an 18-man squad named by NI U19s boss Steve Beaglehole for next week’s matches, which take place between October 8-13 in Newry, Coleraine and Belfast. Goalkeeper Devlin has impressed in his early appearances for the Reds’ U18s and is rewarded with a first call-up to his national U19 squad just a week after turning 17. Evans on the other hand steps down a level, having recently made his first three appearances for the U21s. Not 19 until next summer, the midfielder was always likely to be involved in these games, especially with the U21 side having not made it to their own European Championship next summer.
The Northern Irish pair’s involvement only serves to make the October 10th clash between the host side and England all the more interesting from a United point of view, with the possibility of having as many as five of our players on show – Ben Amos, Danny Drinkwater and Danny Welbeck will all be pushing for a place in the England line-up for the game at Belfast’s Windsor Park next Friday. The other United player participating in U19 qualifiers over the next couple of weeks is Davide Petrucci, whose Italy side get their campaign underway later today with a match against Latvia in the Moldovan town of Orhei.
Further call-ups aren’t out of the question – Norway and Portugal don’t appear to have named their squads yet (although my Norwegian and Portugese is, well, non-existent, so I may just be looking in the wrong place), so Magnus Eikrem and Evandro Brandão may still nudge the number of young Reds involved up to seven or eight.