Everton had a significant number of players away on international duty either for their respective senior or youth squads, but no one would have strengthened his claim for a starting spot at the World Cup like Jordan Pickford.
The Everton goalkeeper was impeccable with his clean sheet against Ronald Koeman’s Netherlands and won rave reviews throughout the media, which has placed him in pole position to man the gloves for the Three Lions this summer.
Seamus Coleman captained his Republic of Ireland in a 1-0 loss in a friendly against Turkey , playing just over an hour like his Toffees teammate Cenk Tosun. The striker also played most of the 2-2 draw away at Montengero, and in all three goals scored by his country, Tosun had apart to play in drawing away defenders from the eventual goalscorer.
Ashley Williams ‘s miserable season continued as he captained the Wales team to a 1-0 loss against Uruguay in the final of China Cup after having beaten the hosts 6-0. Williams completely lost his man as Edinson Cavani was wide open to slot home the tournament-winning goal.
Cuco Martina played both games as Curacao took on Bolivia in a double-header, drawing 1-1 and then winning the second game 1-0.
Idrissa Gueye and Oumar Niasse were both called up for Senegal, but the midfielder returned to the Blues with a muscle tear. Niasse played just over an hour in the 1-1 draw against Uzbekistan, and was on the bench for the 0-0 draw against Bosnia & Herzegovina. Midfielder Muhamed Besic was on that Bosnian team, coming on as a late substitute. He had played almost the full game in a 1-0 win over Bulgaria previously.
Winger Yannick Bolasie played 72 minutes for the Democratic Republic of Congo side, only to see his team concede two quick goals after his substitution to lose 2-0 to Tanzania yesterday.
There was better news on the youth front, with Dominic Calvert-Lewin scoring the opener for the England Under-21 side in a win over Ukraine in a Euor qualifier while Jonjoe Kenny was named Man of the Match. Tom Davies had a quiet game for the Young Lions while James Maddison, who has been linked with the Blues was especially strong as attacking midfielder.
In the previous game, also a 2-1 win this time over Romania, Kieran Dowell played most of the game while Ademola Lookman was on for an hour and Calvert-Lewin came on for the last few minutes.
There was some bad news for Mason Holgate who will have ankle surgery and will likely miss the rest of the season depending on the severity. Additionally, he received a warning for some ill-advised tweets from six years ago when he was 15 years old.
Shayne Lavery featured in both of Northern Ireland U-21s’ games, scoring against Spain in a 5-3 loss and being held 0-0 at home against Iceland.
Alex Denny and Lewis Gibson both featured in various games as Englands U-18s beat Qatar 4-0, Argentina 2-1 and Belarus 2-1 as well.
Michael Collins played for Republic of Ireland U-18s’ double-header against Romania, winning 2-1 and then losing the other 1-0.
Right winger Pawel Zuk (#7 in white) scored once and featured in all of Poland U-17s’ qualifiers for next month’s European Championship, but saw his side crash out on goal difference.