FOOTBALL: Soham-born shot-stopper Nick Pope named in the England squad
PUBLISHED: 10:44 16 May 2018 | UPDATED: 17:58 16 May 2018
The remarkable rise of goalkeeper Nick Pope has continued with selection for the World Cup today.
The Soham-born shot-stopper got the nod from England boss Gareth Southgate to be part of the squad for the summer tournament in Russia.
Pope, who has had a terrific season with Burnley in the Premier League, was announced as one of three goalkeepers in the England party along with Stoke City man Jack Butland and Everton ace Jordan Pickford.
The 26 year-old has enjoyed an incredible journey to the top after overcoming the disappointment of being released by Ipswich Town as a 16 year-old.
He then played for Bury Town in non-league football before earning a move to Charlton Athletic in 2011.
A succession of loan spells followed before he eventually becme first choice in a 2015/16 campaign which ended in relegation for Charlton.
But Pope earned a move to Burnley in the summer of 2016, initially as their third-choice goalkeeper.
He made four appearances during the 2016/17 season in cup competitions but seized his chance early last term when number one Tom Heaton suffered a dislocated shoulder.
Pope has earned rave reviews ever since and was called into the England squad for the first time ahead of March friendlies and Holland and Italy. Although he didn’t actually get any playing time in those games, it appears he did enough impression to earn a seat on the plane to Russia.
Pope is a former St Andrew’s Primary and Kings College Ely pupil. His brother, Josh, is the first-choice goalkeeper for local club Soham Town Rangers.