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Matthew Pennington has revealed that he learned of his England Under-19s call up following a text message from his mother.

The defender is in contention to make his international debut later this month after being included in Noel Blake's squad for the friendly against Turkey.

Pennington is one of four Everton players named in the group, with Tyias Browning, John Stones and John Lundstram – currently on loan at Doncaster Rovers – also getting the call.

Understandably, the Warrington-born youngster is thrilled to have been recognised in such a way.

“I got a text off my mum,” Pennington told evertonfc.com. “I looked at my phone and I had a lot of text messages and a few missed calls, so I was wondering what was going on.

“It’s a dream to play for your country and I’m just glad I have got the chance. I’ve never played an international before, so it’s a bit of a shock [to get called up].”

Pennington’s call up has come on the back on a series of impressive performances for the Club’s Under-18s team.

The youngster, who has been with Everton since the age of 11, has featured in all three of the FA Youth Cup ties this season and scored crucial goals in the wins over Port Vale and Arsenal.

He has also made his way into the Under-21s setup, playing in the 2-2 draw at Sunderland last month.

“I think I have been doing well this season,” added Pennington. “Usually I play centre-half but I have been playing right-back recently, I have been enjoying it and doing well.

“It will be a step up [playing international football] but I will take it as it comes. I will carry on doing what I have been doing and see where it takes me.”

AFC Telford United's home of The New Bucks Head Stadium plays host to England Under-19s' contest with Turkey on Thursday 21 March. Tickets are priced at £3 for adults and £1 for concessions.

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