Daniel Ballard and Karl Hein are in their national team squads for the upcoming international break once again, after making their debuts in the last one.
Neither player has even made an Arsenal senior squad for a competitive fixture so far. They have quite a few u23 appearances between them, but it’s still unusual to see young players featuring internationally before reaching the top level for their clubs.
Perhaps Ballard is a special case, having travelled with the Northern Ireland squad on multiple occasions before making his debut. They had a good chance to look at him in training and settle him in before playing him.
He eventually got his chance over the last break, playing 90 minutes against Romania and 45 against Norway.
As for Hein, he’s clearly highly-rated back in Estonia, and he won Man of the Match on his debut. Although he couldn’t keep a clean sheet, he did enough to earn another call-up.
Estonia face Lithuania, North Macedonia and Armenia over the break. Northern Ireland play against Bosnia and Herzegovina, Austria and Norway. Good luck to both players again this time around.