Congratulations to Ben...
18 year old Stevenage central defender, Ben Wilmot has been called up for International Duty by England U19s for their UEFA Elite Round Qualifying ahead of this summer’s European Championships in Finland.
Paul Simpson’s side are the reigning UEFA European U19 Champions after lifting the trophy last season.
Wilmot becomes the first ever Stevenage player to represent England at youth level and will leave for Macedonia this Saturday for a three game camp.
England U19s first face Hungary (21st March) before games against Latvia (24th March) and FYR Macedonia (27th March).
Wilmot - still a Second Year Scholar - joined Stevenage FC Academy when he was 14 years old and has progressed through the system to now become a First Team regular.
Speaking about the call-up, Wilmot says he is ‘overwhelmed’.
“It is such an honour to be called up by your country. It is always been a dream but not one that you can afford to think about too much.
"I am overwhelmed to be honest. It is largely down to the club and the staff for giving me the opportunity to play in the First Team and all I have done is try to maintain my place and give my all.
"I would like to thank everyone at the club, from the Chairman to the Manager, to all the lads in the squad. If it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t be in this privileged situation.
"Now I am excited to join up with the rest of the lads and help the team qualify for this summer’s tournament.”
Chairman Phil Wallace says the news is recognition for the hard-work put in by the club’s coaching staff in developing young players and improving the pathway from Academy to First Team.
“We are all delighted for Ben and it is just rewards for his performances over the past few months.
"Youth development is important to our success as a club and over recent years, we have started to reap the benefits of this strategy, demonstrated by a total of 6 young players called up for International Duty this past week.
"Ben deserved his opportunity with the First Team and I am sure he will take his chance with England, just as he did with Stevenage.”
Ellery Balcombe – Brentford
Jamie Cumming - Chelsea
Trevoh Chalobah Chelsea
Edward Francis - Manchester City
Reece James - Chelsea
Dujon Sterling - Chelsea
Japhet Tanganga - Tottenham Hotspur
Ben Wilmot - Stevenage
Flynn Downes - Luton Town (loan from Ipswich Town)
Elliot Embleton - Sunderland
Adam Lewis - Liverpool
Mason Mount - Vitesse Arnhem (loan from Chelsea)
Tristan Nydam – Ipswich Town
Joe Willock - Arsenal
Ben Brereton - Nottingham Forest
Phil Foden - Manchester City
George Hirst - Sheffield Wednesday
Reiss Nelson - Arsenal
Edward Nketiah - Arsenal
Jadon Sancho - Borussia Dortmund