Harrison Reed says he can’t wait for his first taste of international football after he and three of his Saints teammates were named in the latest England Under-19 squad.
The midfielder is joined by Calum Chambers, Matt Targett and Sam Gallagher in Noel Blake’s 17-man party for next Wednesday’s friendly against Turkey in Chester.
Chambers is a mainstay of the Young Lions side, having racked up 14 caps already, while Targett made his debut towards the end of last year – but Reed and Gallagher have been included for the first time.
19-year-old Harrison says he is overjoyed to have been given his maiden call-up: “I’m obviously delighted,” he told Southampton's official YouTube channel after the squad was published.
“I’ve seen Calum go away with the Under-19s before, so that was a target for me at the beginning of the season and I’m delighted to be one of the four selected.
“It’s going to be a great experience, so I really can’t wait for it. To put on an England shirt would be a dream come true.”
The squad is due to convene in Chester on Saturday evening and Reed says he will be leaning on teammate – and housemate! – Chambers for some advice over the coming fortnight.
“He is captain of the side and I live with him, so I speak to him about it a lot in terms of what it’ll be like and what to expect,” explained the Worthing-raised midfielder.
“Everyone will be looking to him for help – I think he will almost be the father of the group!
“I speak to him about football every single night and after games, and sometimes he asks me for advice as well because I can watch from another perspective when he’s playing and I’m not. We help each-other out, and that’s good.”
Reed has made five appearances for Saints’ First Team this season, having made his debut in the Capital One Cup last August before going on to feature in the Barclays Premier League and The FA Cup.
And, having been playing for the Club’s Under-18s little over a year ago, he says he’s pleased with the progress he’s made since the appointment of Mauricio Pochettino as First Team Manager last January.
“If I look at where I was at the start of last season, I could only have dreamed of this,” Reed admitted.
“I can’t thank the gaffer and the coaching staff enough for the trust they’ve put in me. It’s helped my confidence in the games I’ve come on in, and I’m happy with how I’ve done. I’m really pleased.
“I’m delighted with the way the season has gone, and I’m hoping to kick on in the last few months of the campaign.”
The four players heading away with England’s Under-19s are unlikely to be the only Saints on Three Lions duty next week, with a number in contention to be included in the senior and Under-21 squads.
And Reed says the Club should be proud to have so many home-grown players involved in the national set-up, adding that he hopes to represent his country at a higher level in the future.
“It’s good for the Academy,” he affirmed. “It just shows how far the Club has come to have people coming through at every level.
“We look to Adam Lallana, Jay Rodriguez and Rickie Lambert and think: ‘if they’ve come from this club, why can’t we do that?’
“I’m going to take each day as it comes. Hopefully I’ll impress the England coaching staff and I’ll see where that takes me.”