Club and country debut within 66 days for shocked Carson

JOSH Carson has admitted he has surprised himself by his meteoric rise to first team football with Ipswich Town and Northern Ireland – all in the space of just 66 days!

The teenage midfielder was little known even among Town fans for most of last season, but shot onto the scene with a dash of tricks and eye for goal.

And his remarkable end to the season was complete when Northern Ireland boss Nigel Worthington handed Carson his first international cap in Tuesday night’s 5-0 thrashing by the Republic of Ireland.

The 17-year-old has revealed that even he has been taken aback by his swift elevation – initially expecting to have to wait another two years for his chance with the Blues.

Carson admitted: “As soon as I signed for Ipswich, I thought I’d hopefully make my debut at about 19 or 20. I was always told I was good enough and to try and keep doing what I was doing. Luckily enough I have shown that in the past couple of months. I am just really glad to be where I am now and really glad I have done well for Ipswich over the last couple of months.”

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Town boss Paul Jewell only gave Carson his debut in the 2-0 win against Scunthorpe in March before the youngster made a further seven starts, scoring three goals.

His rise from relative unknown came at a perfect time, offering the slightly dispirited Town following the chance to cheer on a young gun. And his performances caught the eye of Worthington who threw him straight into the Northern Ireland side for their Carling Nations Cup match.

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Speaking about his call-up, Carson added: “When I saw the number come up on my phone, I thought he was just ringing to say I hadn’t made it. When he said the words ‘I would be in the squad’, I was over the moon and buzzing.”

Carson has now vowed to help Northern Ireland get over their midweek drubbing – starting with tomorrow night’s match against Wales.

He said: “The atmosphere in the dressing room after the (Republic of Ireland) match was very down, but hopefully we’ll make things right against Wales.

“As far as my international debut is concerned, I’m proud to be there and be part of it. It’s not the result I would have wanted though. I don’t think we deserved a 5-0 drubbing, but that’s football.

“We’ll put in a good performance against Wales because we’ve nothing to lose and we’ll be ready to battle against them.”

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