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International call-ups for Norwich City youngsters

Ben Godfrey has been called up to the England Under 20s squad. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

Ben Godfrey has been called up to the England Under 20s squad. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

Paul Chesterton

Ben Godfrey's emergence at Norwich City has been rewarded with a call-up to the England Under-20s squad for internationals against Poland and Portugal later this month.

The defender has been a revelation for the Canaries this season, forming a partnership at centre half with Christoph Zimmermann that is keeping the experienced duo of Grant Hanley and Timm Klose on the bench.

His performances have caught the eye of the England hierarchy and manager Paul Simpson has included the former York City man in his 23-man squad for the Young Lions’ double header in the Euro Elite League.

“We’re going into these games with a very strong squad,” said Simpson, whose side entertain Poland on Thursday, March 21 before heading to Portugal the following Tuesday.

“It’s a very similar squad to our previous camps this season, apart from a few players successfully going up to the U21s, and it’s good to have that consistency.

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“We’re expecting two tough games. Poland are coming with their U21 Talent ID group and Portugal are recognised as one of the best U20 teams in Europe, so we know that these matches will be a good test for us.

“The main objectives for us is for our players to continue their development in international football, along with preparing for this summer’s Toulon Tournament.”

Meanwhile, City team-mate Max Aarons has been included in Keith Downing’s England U19s squad for three games against Czech Republic, Greece and Denmark.

They are aiming to seal their place at this summer’s U19 Euro Finals in Armenia.

England kick-off against the Czechs first on Wednesday, March 20, before they tackle Greece in the second game on Saturday, March 23.

The final game with Denmark takes place on Tuesday, March 26, with all three games being staged at St George’s Park.

• Canaries youngsters Adam Idah and Simon Power have also been included in the Republic of Ireland U21s squad for the first time.

Speedy winger Power, 20, is currently out on loan with Dordrecht in the Dutch second tier, scoring one and setting up another in seven games since joining in January, and was previously capped at U18 and U19 level.

Prolific striker Idah, 18, has scored consistently at U17, U18 and U19 levels for his country and has 13 goals from 21 games to his name for City’s U23s so far this season.

They have been called up for a Uefa U21 European Championship qualifier against Luxembourg on Sunday, March 24 (5pm) at the Tallaght Stadium, the home of Shamrock Rovers in South Dublin.

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