Bruno & Joelinton (Brazil)
Match: BRA vs Guinea (Friendly)
Joelinton won’t forget last Saturday night easily, as contradictory as that might sound when put out of context.
Joelinton finally got called up by Brazil’s national team and he made his senior debut... scoring (!) the opening goal in a comfortable victory over Guinea in Barcelona just 27 minutes (!!) into the matchup.
After completing another delightful campaign at Newcastle United, JoJo received his first call-up to the national team and he was his usual self.
Ramon Menezes’ squad had an easy one with additional goals from Rodrygo, Eder Militao, and Vinicius Junior securing a friendly 4-1 victory against minnows from Guinea.
With 25 minutes remaining, Joelinton got subbed off and replaced by fellow Magpie Bruno. Odds are the roles are reversed for the game against Senegal on Tuesday., with Bruno in the starting XI and Joelinton coming off the pine.
Kieran Trippier & Callum Wilson (England)
Match: ENG vs Malta (EURO 2024 Qualifiers)
In Gareth Southgate’s first EURO 2024 qualifier of the June international window, full-back Trippier logged the full 90 minutes while striker Callum Wilson entered the pitch from the bench but made his presence truly felt.
England defeated Malta 4-0 giving the tiny nation no chance of inflicting any damage on the Three Lions.
Getting onto the field in relief of Rumor King Harry Kane, Wilson converted an 82nd-minute penalty, sealing the final score and wrapping things us for England before they take on North Macedonia on Monday.
By scoring on Friday, Wilson became the first Newcastle player to bag a goal for the England national team since Michael Owen (remember him?) accomplished the same feat in 2007!
Sven Botman (Netherlands)
Match: NED vs Croatia (Nations League Semi-Final)
Despite his potential international debut being on the close horizon with an extraordinary chance at getting his first minutes against Croatia in a semi-final, no less, uncapped D-Man Botman was unable to partake in the game. Coincidentally or not, the Dutch contingent lost. Alas.
Botman previously missed out on his inaugural senior appearance due to illness when he withdrew from the squad in March because of a stomach bug, but we all expected him to at least get a relief cameo off the pine. Didn’t happen. Not even with the game against Croatia getting all the way into extra time. Kouman, please.
Our Magpie was once again resigned to the bench at De Kuip but he will have another chance at debuting (and it will inevitably happen this time, believe me) on Sunday in the third-place game between the Netherlands and Italy.
Fabian Schar (Switzerland)
Match: SWI vs Romania (EURO 2024 Qualifiers)
The Swiss squad faced Andorra and made things more difficult than expected for themselves winning by a razor-thin one-goal margin 2-1 on Friday.
Schar didn’t grace the pitch, staying on the bench for the full 90 minutes and now looking at Monday’s matchup against Romania as his lone chance to get another international cap before the end of this football season.
Alexander Isak (Sweden)
Match: SWE vs New Zealand (Friendly)
The Swede demolished New Zealand in a sound and solid 4-1 victory at Friends Arena in Stockholm on Friday. Isak was rested by the manager of his nation, staying put on the bench for the full game.
Sweden have more important things to think about starting with a Tuesday EURO qualifier against Austria on the road, and that’s most probably when we’ll get to watch Isak in action as that’s a crucial game for the Nordic nation to win.
Martin Dubravka (Slovakia)
Match: AUS vs Ecuador (Friendly)
Dubby started on Slovakia’s goal in their friendly matchup against Iceland on Saturday, one the former ended up winning 2-1 with a late winner scored in the 69th minute and already well into the second half of the game.
Dubravka stopped all attempts by Iceland bar one, the goal-scoring effort, which came from the penalty spot on the verge of halftime. Alfred Finnbogason, who somehow is still playing football at the highest levels by the looks of it, was the man tasked with taking the PK that brought Iceland back and tied things at 1-1 before Slovakia’s decider.