Blackpool youngster makes his international debut as Wales U18 are beaten by England thanks to goals from Man City and Aston Villa men
Blackpool youngster Luke Mariette was handed his international debut for Wales’ Under-18s against England this lunchtime.
The midfielder was a 74th-minute substitute as England’s youngsters ran out 2-0 winners in Cardiff.
While the Three Lions dominated the vast majority of possession during this international friendly, Wales had the clearer-cut chances, even missing a first-half penalty.
But England’s quality shone through in the second-half, as Manchester City star Liam Delap - the son of former Stoke City man Rory - netted from the penalty spot before Aston Villa forward Carney Chukwuemeka doubled the away side’s lead 12 minutes from time.
Wales’ Under-18 side are coached by Rob Edwards, who made 69 appearances for Blackpool between 2004 and 2006 after moving from rivals Preston North End.
Mariette, who has been an impressive performer for Blackpool’s youth-team this season, was a late call-up to the squad late due to injuries.
The 17-year-old has been involved with Blackpool’s first-team on a couple of occasions this season, having been named on the bench for the EFL Trophy game against Fleetwood Town and the FA Cup fourth round defeat to Premier League side Brighton & Hove Albion.
The midfielder made the move to Blackpool in June 2020 following his departure from Wigan Athletic.
“I'm absolutely delighted to have been called up for my country," Mariette said before the game.
“I've been working hard to get this, so it's a dream come true.
“It means the world to me because I've always wanted to represent my country at a top level and now I've got the chance to go and do it.”
Mariette’s call-up earned the praise of Blackpool’s academy director, who wrote on social media: “Office day at the academy today whilst watching Luke Mariette make his debut for Wales U18 v England.
“Great to see Blackpool academy players getting international honours.”
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