Pope’s England outing pleases Dyche

By PA Sport Staff
PA Media: Sport

Burnley boss Sean Dyche was delighted to see the latest step in Nick Pope’s development, with a first England start for the Clarets goalkeeper.

Pope played the full 90 minutes of the Three Lions’ 4-0 win in Kosovo, adding to the previous international cap he won as a substitute against Costa Rica 18 months ago.

Last season was a concerning one for the 27-year-old, with a bad shoulder injury and competition from Tom Heaton and Joe Hart rendering him a peripheral figure at Turf Moor.

Scroll to continue with content

After no Premier League appearances in 2018/19 he has emerged as the club’s undisputed number one this term, with Heaton sold to Aston Villa and Hart on the bench.

A nod from Gareth Southgate has now confirmed he is back on the up.

“I’m pleased for him,” said Dyche.

“It was a dominant night (in Kosovo), but the one thing I know from being a defender, let alone being a goalkeeper, is that it’s lovely when you’re playing and you get a clean sheet.

“He’ll be very pleased with that, regardless of whether he had a relatively quiet evening or not.

“And just the feeling of being out there and playing and being part of it. He’s enjoyed the experience. He’s come through a serious injury and keeps delivering performances and I think he continues to improve, as well.”

Burnley visit Watford on Saturday, having entered the international break on the back of a 3-0 win over West Ham.

Matej Vydra (hip) will not be involved against his former club, with Johann Berg Gudmundsson (hamstring) and Danny Drinkwater also on the sidelines.

What to read next