Lewis eyeing England spot

Goalkeeper Joe Lewis is hoping Morecambe's giantkilling Carling Cup run can propel him into the full England Under-21 squad. The 19-year-old, who is on loan from Norwich City until the end of December, has played a starring role for Morecambe in disposing of two Championship sides in Preston and Wolves and Lewis has now set his sights on earning his first Under-21 cap.

Goalkeeper Joe Lewis is hoping Morecambe's giantkilling Carling Cup run can propel him into the full England Under-21 squad.

The 19-year-old, who is on loan from Norwich City until the end of December, has played a starring role for Morecambe in disposing of two Championship sides in Preston and Wolves and Lewis has now set his sights on earning his first Under-21 cap.

“I think Stuart Pearce has come out and said that I'm the only Under-21 'keeper getting first team experience week in, week out at the moment,” he said.

“I'm sure the other goalkeepers I'm up against would agree that they need to be getting some first team football as well but if they don't then it could open the door for myself. It really would be great to get my first cap at that level but we'll have to wait and see.”


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Lewis was put on stand-by for the Under-21s recent match against Romania and the youngster admitted that none of the recent events would have happened if it wasn't for his loan move to Morecambe.

“It's just great experience playing against better opposition and I could not have wished for a better start really - the Under-21 call came out of nowhere but I know that I'm being watched closely now and that can only be a good thing for the future.”

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Lewis revealed how thankful he is to Norwich for letting him play in the Carling Cup with the League Two side as many clubs do not allow their players to become cup-tied while out on loan.

However, such was City boss Peter Grant's determination for Lewis to get some first team football he allowed the academy product to feature for the Shrimps.

“I was not even 100 per cent certain that I would be able to play in the cup a couple of days before the game but I am really grateful to Norwich for letting me play.

“I think we've got enough cover in (David) Marshall and (Matthew) Gilks but the club did not have to let me play. It's great to be playing first team football though. I was not getting the games that I wanted and however well you train you cannot make up for playing in a proper match situation.”

Lewis admitted that not even in his wildest dreams did he think that Morecambe would embark on a cup run that has seen them dispose of two Championship sides but feels it's nothing less than they deserve.

“We did really well to beat Preston away and to beat Wolves as well is brilliant for us,” he said. “But we haven't been lucky - in those two games I think we have thoroughly deserved to come through. Against Wolves they had a lot of possession but they never really threatened us apart from the goal.

“It's just great experience playing against better opposition and I could not have wished for a better start really.

“I'm getting to know the lads really well here now. It was quite difficult to settle in because in my first game I did not even know what a lot of the lads' positions were. But I've settled now and hopefully I can push on from here.”

Lewis is desperate for Morecambe to avoid Norwich in the third round draw as under the terms of the loan agreement he would be ineligible to play. A Manchester United or Liverpool would do nicely for Lewis.

“Obviously I'm hoping to steer clear of Norwich again so that I'm able to play,” he said. “The big boys come out in the next round and it would be great to draw one of these - home or away.”

Ü The Carling Cup third round draw will be televised live on Sky Sports' Soccer Saturday programme at about 12.15pm.

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