I REMEMBER back when the Clarets would only have no game over the international break if three or more players were called up for their country.

And even then it was if our intended-opponents had lads flying off to far-flung locations to represent nations at the lower reaches of the FIFA rankings.

That seems so long ago.

These days we automatically get the breaks, not just because we’re in the top flight but because we have internationals of our own. And plenty of them.

It was absolutely fantastic to see Nick Pope and James Tarkowski get the call-up from England boss Gareth Southgate last week and it will be even sweeter if they both get some Three Lions game time over the next week.

Without being negative, I’m not holding my breath about seeing Pope between the sticks. A lot of the talk in the papers this week has been about the other three keepers in the squad, despite none of them reaching the dizzying heights our man has this season.

I don’t understand the decision to call Joe Hart up I have to say. He’s not been playing for his club West Ham much this season and when he did return the other week we stuck three past him!

Somebody pointed out it might be for the experience he brings but annoyingly for Burnley fans that means Pope has even less chance of seeing some action.

Still, the experience will be brilliant for him and the fact we now have two keepers at the club who are being thought of at international level is an absolute testament to the work keeper coach Billy Mercer has done over the last couple of years.

Let’s not forget that both Tom Heaton and Pope had been relegated with their respective clubs before landing at Turf Moor. They’ve both had unbelievable journeys since then and the caps and the call-ups are just rewards for their form.

Tarky, I think, has a real genuine chance of not only getting a game but being on that plane to Russia for the World Cup.

His game is another which has developed and improved under Dyche and it will be fascinating to see how he steps up to that next level, especially given the quality of the opposition England will face in the next week or so.

So much so that I’m actually looking forward to watching the national team for once!