Pickford welcomes England call

Pickford welcomes England call

Sunderland keeper Jordan Pickford says he is "honoured" to have been called up to the England squad for the first time.

Pickford began the season as understudy to Vito Mannone but is now first-choice at the Stadium of Light after the Italian suffered an arm injury in training.

The 22-year-old has represented England at various youth levels and has now been given his first senior call-up after being drafted into the squad to face Slovenia in Tuesday's 2018 World Cup qualifier.

Pickford, who had been due to link up with the Under-21s for their Euro qualifier against Bulgaria, replaces Tom Heaton in Gareth Southgate's party after the Burnley stopper picked up a minor injury.

The Sunderland star revealed his delight on Twitter, tweeting: "Honoured to be called up to the @England senior team for the first time! Really excited for the journey ahead, can't wait to get started."