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Anderson among several United call-ups

Written by Rory Mitchinson

Newcastle United youngster Elliot Anderson has been called up by England at Under-19 level for the first time.

The 18-year-old – who has made two substitute appearances for the Magpies’ first team – has represented Scotland at various age levels, but remains eligible to play for England, too. He will link up with Ian Foster’s squad for a training camp at St. George’s Park next week and could figure in their friendly game against Arsenal in eight days’ time.

Anderson is among a string of United players heading off on international duty during the upcoming break, with attention across Europe beginning to turn to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Martin Dúbravka and Ryan Fraser could both figure in a hat-trick of qualifiers for their respective countries. Dúbravka’s Slovakia will be expected to take maximum points from games against Cyprus and Malta before shifting their focus to a potentially significant clash with Russia, with the latter two fixtures both taking place on home soil. Fraser’s Scotland, meanwhile, host Austria and the Faroe Islands either side of a trip to old adversaries Israel.

For Dúbravka and Fraser, it is the first international action in what could prove a very busy year, with Slovakia and Scotland both having qualified for this summer’s rescheduled European Championships. Emil Krafth’s Sweden will be there, too, though the defender’s immediate priority will be to help the Blågult see off Georgia and Kosovo in their first two World Cup qualifiers. The Swedes then round off their March programme with a friendly against Estonia in Solna.

Ciaran Clark, Jeff Hendrick and Jamal Lewis’ respective countries all missed out on a spot at the Euros, but the trio have a chance to start making up for that disappointment when they return to international action next week. The former pair have both been called up by the Republic of Ireland, who start their World Cup qualification campaign against Serbia and Luxembourg before travelling to Hungary for a friendly against hosts Qatar. Lewis’ Northern Ireland, meanwhile, take on Italy and Bulgaria in Europe’s Group C, with a home friendly against the United States sandwiched in between.

Elsewhere, Anderson’s fellow youngster Oisín McEntee has been provisionally selected for the Republic of Ireland Under-21s’ friendly against Wales at Wrexham’s Racecourse Ground.

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