Nerveless Tarkowski enjoys England debut as international Clarets return to Turf Moor

Nerveless Tarkowski enjoys England debut as international Clarets return to Turf Moor

The central defender became the 28th England international to come from Burnley.

Chris Lincoln

James Tarkowski claimed he "did not feel nervous" before his international bow as England drew 1-1 with Italy.

"You build for nights like this"

Speaking to Sky Sports after the contest, the defender suggested he only got nervous when he "went out on the pitch". Tarkowski was assured and confident throughout with manager Gareth Southgate explaining "he did very well."

However, the debutant was involved in the controversial late penalty that gave Italy the opportunity to prevent England from a record sixth successive clean sheet. Tarkowski told the Burnley website, "whether you think it’s a penalty or not it’s still disappointing but overall it was a great occasion for myself and my family and a good night for the team."

He added, “it was a big occasion, but you play all these games in your career to build for nights like this so it doesn’t overwhelm you. You just have to enjoy yourself and do what you do."

It turned out to be an expensive night for Burnley who will now have to pay a £500,000 clause to Tarkowski's former club, Brentford.

"It's been a great ten days"

Goalkeeper Nick Pope was also in the squad but failed to make his debut and now faces a battle to keep his Burnley spot with club captain Tom Heaton recovering from injury for the final few games of the season. Yet Pope took a lot from training with the England squad and explained, "I’ve learned a lot about myself, a lot about my game and where to improve. It’s been a great ten days."

Meanwhile, Sam Vokes impressed for Wales in Ryan Giggs' first game in charge, playing a part in four goals against China. However, he could not help his side to victory in the China Cup against Uruguay.

There were defeats for Jeff Hendrick and Kevin Long as they represented the Republic of Ireland against Turkey, whilst Johann Berg Gudmundsson saw his Iceland side concede six goals in two games as they lost to Mexico and Peru.