Northern Ireland U19s manager Gerard Lyttle has named a 22-strong panel for his team’s two home friendlies against Faroe Islands U19s next week.
And his squad features four new faces in Arsenal defender Henry Jeffcott, Tottenham Hotspur forward Jamie Donley, Bournemouth goalkeeper Josh Clarke and Larne attacker Matthew Lusty.
Also included this time is Charlton Athletic forward Euan Williams, who was called up for Lyttle’s first training camp as U19s boss back in the spring but had to withdraw due to injury.
Back in the fold are Leeds United midfielder Charlie Allen and Everton midfielder Isaac Price who both missed a U19s training camp in June after taking part in Lyttle’s maiden camp.
The first of the games against Faroe Islands is next Wednesday (1 Sep) at Mourneview Park in Lurgan (3pm start), while the second is at The Oval in east Belfast next Friday (3 Sep) and once again there will be a 3pm kick-off.
The encounters against the Faroese will be the final preparations for the U19s ahead of matches against Czech Republic, Denmark and Kazakhstan (Group 13) in a four-team mini tournament in the qualifying round for the next U19 Euros.
The European qualifiers are pencilled in for 6-12 October in the Czech Republic, although match venues have still to be finalised.
Back in June, as part of their training camp, the U19s defeated a Dundalk Select 2-0 in a friendly at Oriel Park thanks to goals from Terry Devlin and Rio McEvoy.
Bolton Wanderers striker McEvoy misses out this time as does Warrenpoint Town keeper Stephen McMullan, Fleetwood Town pair Harry Wilson and Jake Wallace plus Lincoln City defender Bobby Deane and midfielders Charlie Lindsay (Rangers) and Oisin Conaty (Portadown).
Gerard Lyttle is upbeat ahead of the final get-together before the qualifiers. He is particularly looking forward to seeing the new faces in action.
The manager said: “I’m delighted Euan Williams is fit and ready and looking forward to this camp.
“Jamie Donley is a kid I know really well. I took him a year young to the Victory Shield as part of our 2004s squad. He’s a player I rate very highly. He’s the youngest player we have had in and around the U19s. He’s a U17s player but I feel he’s ready to step up and challenge at this level.
“Jamie has represented England at various age groups but for this camp he has chosen to be part of our squad, which really pleases me.”
He also revealed Henry Jeffcott has been on his radar for some time: “Again I am really looking forward to seeing him around the group. We know he has talent and is well thought of at his club.”
The U19s boss further pointed out: “I am also looking forward to welcoming Josh Clarke. He had to withdraw from our last squad through injury, so it’s great that he will be with us now.”
Lyttle is welcoming new staff this time around, too.
Kevin Pilkington has replaced Roy Carroll as the goalkeeping coach in the Northern Ireland U19s/U17s set-up.
Carroll’s step up to the same role with the senior men’s team has paved the way for former Manchester United, Mansfield Town and Notts County keeper Pilkington, who is currently the first team goalkeeping coach at Barnsley, to join Lyttle’s backroom team.
And former Sunderland and Middlesbrough midfielder Lee Cattermole, who only hung up his boots last summer after a short spell in the Dutch top flight with VVV Venlo, has been given a more general coaching role alongside Gareth McAuley.
“Kevin and Lee have played at the highest level and bring with them a wealth of experience and high standards,” said Lyttle.
Northern Ireland U19s squad to face Faroe Islands (two friendlies):
Goalkeepers: Josh Clarke (Bournemouth), Dylan Berry (Norwich City).
Defenders: Henry Jeffcott (Arsenal), Lewis Mackinnon (Rangers), Michael Forbes (West Ham United), Shea Charles (Manchester City), Cameron Stewart (Ipswich Town), Sean McAllister (Everton), Brodie Spencer (Huddersfield Town), Dane McCullough (Burnley), Matty Carson (Southampton).
Midfielders: Charlie Allen (Leeds United), Terry Devlin (Dungannon Swifts), Caolan McBride (Aston Villa), Isaac Price (Everton), Jamie McDonnell (Nottingham Forest).
Forwards: Jamie Donley (Tottenham Hotspur), Euan Williams (Charlton Athletic), Ross McCausland (Rangers), Matthew Lusty (Larne), Ciaran McGuckin (Rotherham United), Conor Falls (Huddersfield Town).