Five Everton youngsters have been called up to the England Under-20s squad for the World Cup later this month.
Defenders Jonjoe Kenny and Callum Connolly, plus midfielders Kieran Dowell, Ademola Lookman and forward Dominic Calvert-Lewin have all been included in Paul Simpson’s Three Lions group.
Hosted by South Korea, England have been placed in Group A and will kick off their campaign against Argentina on Saturday 20 May (6.30am kick-off BST) in Jeonju World Cup stadium, before facing Guinea three days later in the same venue (8am). They complete their group by facing the hosts in Suwon on Friday 26 May (12pm).
England qualified for the tournament off the back of their performance in the 2016 European Under-19s Championships in 2016, where the Three Lions reached the semi-finals, with Kenny, Connolly and Lookman in the squad.
Steve Walsh, Everton’s Director of Football, said the Blues have given the players permission to travel with England despite the first-team squad still having to play Arsenal in their final game of the campaign on 21 May.
“We’re happy for them to go and gain the massive experience of being involved in a World Cup tournament,” he said. “There will be great value to the players in terms of their continued development and they’ll reap the benefits.
“We think they’ll be ready to kick on next season in the Premier League and this tournament will help them do that.”