Pompey talent impresses on England debut

Jack Whatmough. Picture: Joe Pepler
Jack Whatmough. Picture: Joe Pepler
Brett Pitman celebrates his winner against Blackpool. Picture: Joe Pepler

Jackett: Why Pitman is no longer Pompey’s number 10

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Jack Whatmough’s England debut ended in a 2-1 defeat.

Yet the Gosport youngster struck the bar and played the full 90 minutes during yesterday’s under-18 clash against Croatia.

The Pompey defender was named in Neil Dewsnip’s starting line-up for the St George’s Park international friendly.

In doing so he followed in the footsteps of Sam Magri, Adam Webster and Jed Wallace to have in recent years emerged through Andy Awford’s Pompey Academy to represent England.

Unfortunately the occasion ended in a 2-1 defeat, the second time in three days Croatia had inflicted such a scoreline.

Regardless, it was an occasion for Whatmough and his family to savour in a season which has also seen him make the breakthrough into the Pompey first-team.

Spurs’ Emmanuel Sonupe’s first-half opener was cancelled out by Fran Brodic within a minute.

In the 69th minute, Whatmough crashed a header against the bar after getting on the end of Charlie Colkett’s corner from the right.

Just four minutes later Croatia settled the match when Karlo Lulic slotted past Charlie Grainger.

Watching Pompey Academy manager Awford believes the Blues’ 18-year-old can be delighted with his performance, though.

He said: ‘I was really pleased with Jack’s overall performance. He didn’t look out of place.

‘He probably is not used to having so much time on the ball – as they drop off in international football, so it’s about making that right choice at the right time.

‘Hopefully there are many more caps to come.’