Christy Pym: Exeter goalkeeper confident of international class

By Brent PilnickBBC Sport
Matt Grimes and Christy Pym
Grimes and Pym are in a 23-man squad for a four-nations event, also involving Germany, Turkey and the Netherlands

Exeter goalkeeper Christy Pym says being part of England's Under-20 squad proves he and Matt Grimes are good enough to play at the highest level.

Pym and midfielder Grimes, both 19, have kept their places for England's upcoming trip to the Netherlands.

"It proves it wasn't a bit of luck and them trying things," said Pym.

"Matt's got the call-up as well and we've gone away and proved a point to them - everyone can see that we are at the same level they've already got."

The pair became the first players in the League Two club's history to be named in an England age-group squad when they played against Romania last month.

"We're as good as anything out there, if not better," Pym told BBC Sport.

"You take that as a positive and a bit of a confidence boost to know that realistically you're not far off that top level.

"Me and Matt have got the step up on some of the others because we're playing first-team football, which is a million miles away from reserve-team football."

Pym has had the added benefit of having trained with the senior England team after a surprise request from U20s boss Aidy Boothroyd at St George's Park last month.

"I got a knock on the door from Aidy saying 'Ben Foster's injured, would you like to train with the first team?'

"Of course I said yes, it's every boy's dream. It was a good eye opener for me to see the standard I want to get to.

"Having seen Joe Hart and Fraser Forster it's not a million miles away, it's what you can get to, it's achievable.

"They were both very fast across the box and have a big presence, that comes with playing games and experience, and I'm hoping the further and longer my career goes that will add that and improve it to my game."

England under-20 squad:

Goalkeepers: Christy Pym (Exeter City), Christian Walton (Brighton & Hove Albion), Joe Wildsmith (Sheffield Wednesday)

Defenders: Dominic Ball (Tottenham Hotspur) Shay Facey (Manchester City), Kortney Hause (Gillingham, on loan from Wolverhampton Wonderers), Lloyd Jones (Liverpool), Isaac Hayden (Arsenal), Matt Targett (Southampton), Fankaty Dabo (Chelsea)

Midfielders: Ben Pearson (Manchester United), Paul Digby (Barnsley), John Swift (Rotherham United, on loan from Chelsea), Harrison Reed (Southampton), Matty Grimes (Exeter City), Jordan Houghton (Chelsea), Josh Harrop (Manchester United), Callum Robinson (Aston Villa)

Forwards: Jordon Ibe (Derby County, on loan from Liverpool), Chris Long (Everton), Josh Murphy (Norwich City), Kwame Thomas (Derby County) Chuba Akpom (Arsenal)

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