Clarets striker Danny Ings would like nothing more than to emulate Jay Rodriguez and earn a senior England call-up - and maybe partner his former Burnley teammate.
Ings and Rodriguez were yesterday handed international call-ups, Ings for Gareth Southgate’s Under 21s, and Rodriguez for the full squad.
Two years ago, the pair lined up together for Eddie Howe’s Burnley, before Rodriguez earned a £7m. move to the Premier League with Southampton.
And Ings feels Burnley-born Rodriguez has shown what can be achieved: “Hopefully I can look at him and look at his journey and hopefully maybe one day we’ll play together for England.”
Having scored twice on his second appearance for the Under 21s in a 9-0 romp against San Marino in November, Ings is thrilled to be back in the Three Lions shirt against Wales on Wednesday night: “It’s still just as strong a feeling as it was the first time.
“It’s a big achievement for me and my family.”
Ings would love to go into the game, at Derby County’s iPro Stadium, having beaten the Rams at Turf Moor tomorrow.
Burnley are two points clear of Derby in second place in the Championship, and the game represents a big opportunity to create a cushion in the automatic promotion slots: “It is definitely (a huge opportunity), but the lads haven’t even mentioned it.
“Obviously it could give us breathing space between us and them but we’re going into it like it’s any other game and hopefully come out with the best result.”
Ings scored one of the best of his 24 club goals this season in a 3-0 win at Derby in August, but he expects a different game tomorrow: “At their place they had a different manager and staff and things weren’t going as well for them but I’m sure that if we turn up and do all the right things that we’ve done every week then we will be fine.
“In this league it’s all about momentum and consistency, and the performance we gave against Forest was outstanding, especially in the first half.
“I’m sure the lads will take that into this game and if we start the same I’m sure we’ll have every chance.”