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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

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Playing for Carlisle won't hinder youngster's England chances

England Under-19 chief Noel Blake today promised Carlisle United starlet Brad Potts that playing in League One won’t hold him back.

Brad Potts photo
Brad Potts

Along with Crewe goalkeeper Ben Garratt and Swindon’s Miles Storey, Potts was one of only three players representing England Under-19s who aren’t with Premier League or Championship clubs.

But he earned his big chance after catching the eye of team manager Blake during Carlisle’s recent games with Walsall and Preston.

Blake, a man-mountain centre-half who played more than 600 games for Birmingham City and Portsmouth, was impressed with the youngster’s debut performance for England Under-19s, when he nearly set up a goal with a dangerous header into the box just before half-time.

Blake said: “Every English player in this year group has an opportunity, if they’re doing the right thing with their clubs and performing well.

“We watch the games and people will look at us and wonder where Miles Storey and Bradley Potts have appeared from, but I’ve seen him play for Carlisle United and I’ve seen Miles play for Swindon.

“So these boys haven’t appeared from nowhere. We watch them and monitor them and when an opportunity comes along, they have a chance to show what they’re about.

“Even if they have a bad performance, and I’m not saying they did, that’s not the end of the world because we monitor them so we know what they’re capable of. It’s a different kind of situation. League One football is a men’s game, but international football is a different game and played in a different way.

“That’s a situation the lads have got to get used to, playing with different people that they haven’t met before.

“We only met up together on Saturday evening and there we were playing together on Tuesday evening. So I have to be pleased with them, and I am pleased with them.”

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