This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
Former England star Paul Robinson has hailed Everton’s Jordan Pickford for his performances over the international break.
Pickford has been a regular in England’s goal ever since his debut in 2017. It hasn’t, however, always been plain sailing for the Everton keeper, with the likes of Nick Pope and Tom Heaton pushing for the spot between the sticks this season.
Nonetheless, Pickford remains England’s number one and has earned the plaudits from the former shot-stopper Paul Robinson for his performance against Montenegro.
The 25-year-old was inactive for large parts of Gareth Southgate’s dominant display, and when asked if this showed maturity from Pickford, Robinson told Football Insider: “Yeah you’re exactly right, the hardest thing for a goalkeeper at international level, actually any level to be honest, is when you’re not involved in the game.
“But he stayed focused and he stayed concentrated, actually he made an absolutely outstanding save to stop a header, there’s wasn’t a lot made of it, in the first-half, yes there were never going to come back and win the game, but it was so important at that stage.
“Everton and Sunderland he has been busy making saves and has regularly been involved in games, but he showed a side of him that we haven’t really seen, he can stay confident, he can stay calm, he can stay focused for 90 minutes and he can make one or two saves that will potentially see a side win the game.
“It wasn’t match-winning the other night, but going forward it could potentially be.”
Pickford has endured a tough season so far with Everton, as the club have let in 18 league goals and been around the drop zone for most of the campaign.
However, the former Sunderland man proved with his performance against Montenegro that he should still be England’s number one. As the Three Lions led 3-0, Pickford was eventually required to showcase his talent as he kept out a thumping header with a stunning stop.
It was the first time in the match the keeper was called upon and it was just another to add to his fantastic collection of England saves.
The 25-year-old will keep on improving and he may have kept off the pressure from Heaton and Pope with this mature showing.