York City fans have expressed their absolute delight at the news that former goalkeeper Nick Pope has been included in England’s 23-man squad for the World Cup starting in Russia next month.
The 26-year-old is one of three shot-stoppers chosen by manager Gareth Southgate, with Everton’s Jordan Pickford and Jack Butland of Stoke City being the other two, following an outstanding season helping Burnley to qualify for Europe after finishing seventh in the Premier League.
It’s probably fair to say that the majority of York supporters would have been totally unaware of the Soham-born Charlton Athletic prospect when originally arriving on loan at Bootham Crescent in November 2013.
Indeed most of those fans were more likely instead focusing upon the acquisition of experienced Cheltenham Town centre-back Keith Lowe on the exact same day.
Furthermore, Pope was actually recalled by his parent club after just a couple of games, before returning to York in January until the end of the season.
And he was to play a major part – as in fact was fellow newcomer Lowe – in completely transforming the Minstermen’s fortunes under manager Nigel Worthington as they rose dramatically from battling against relegation and sensationally into the play-offs.
During his time with York, Pope made 24 appearances in total while remarkably keeping sixteen clean-sheets.
It’s not surprising, therefore, that despite only representing City for around half a season, their fans continue to hold so much affection for him, and will certainly be cheering their favourite on should he be given his deserved opportunity on the world stage .
— Popey (@Popey1992) May 16, 2018
It’s weird, Nick Pope only played 24 loan games for York, but it still feels immensely special to see him at the World Cup. I’m proud to say that York gave him the chance to prove his quality and get the recognition he deserved.
Well done Nick, go show everyone what you can do????
— YorkCityUltras (@YorkCityUltras) May 16, 2018
knew as soon as I touched Nick Pope's hand in 2013 that he was gunna make the England squad x
— Ellie (@ellie_kats9) May 16, 2018
It feels good seeing someone you regard as ‘one of your own’ getting international recognition. Well done Nick Pope. It’s been a while since I felt that sort of pride. #ycfc pic.twitter.com/DpD9v4NBxP
— Spirit of Eighty Four (@YCSP84) May 16, 2018
Get in Nick Pope! #YCFC
— Charlotte (@lotslottie16) May 16, 2018
— Rebecca (@BeccaCath94) May 16, 2018
Things I never thought likely from @YorkCityFC over the past five years – one of our team from that period getting selected by @fa for the @england #WorldCup2018 squad. Massive congratulations and take a bow Nick Pope.
— Richard May (@rich_may) May 16, 2018
— Minstermen Norway (@MinstermenNOR) May 16, 2018
— Tyneside Minstermen (@TS_Minstermen) May 16, 2018
— Wuggs187 (@wuggs1978) May 16, 2018
I said you were a future England keeper when I saw you play for #ycfc – first time I’ve been proved right! 🙂
— Greg Stone #FBPE (@gm_stone) May 16, 2018
Congratulations mate. Loved your time at #ycfc and we’re all behind you!
— Tom (@Raththekid) May 16, 2018
— Ali Bell (@alibell89) May 16, 2018
— Mark Hallett (@hallymally48) May 16, 2018
— Rodge (@roguez9) May 16, 2018
All YCFC appearances, heritage and general history aside… He’s got to be one of the best players to wear the shirt?!? Certainly proved it! Well done Mr Pope, and well bloody deserved! #ycfc #EnglandSquad pic.twitter.com/TZkT4CVRHb
— TWS (@ycfc_TWS) May 16, 2018
Nick Pope, only good thing we’ve had at #ycfc in the last 5 years
— John Moran (@johnmoran357) May 8, 2018
— Y Front (@YfrontFanzine) May 16, 2018