Paddy McNair began this season as Manchester United's ... *counts on fingers* ... sixth or seventh-choice centreback. But an injury crisis of near-Biblical proportions has seen him make two starts and a third appearance as sub, and he's looked okay. Pretty calm, pretty composed. More so than plenty of his more experienced, older colleagues.
His reward comes in the form of a first call-up to the Northern Ireland squad for their upcoming qualifier against Romania. Speaking to manutd.com, McNair, who would have been involved in his country's last round of fixtures had he not picked up a hamstring injury, made all the right noises:
It's really good. When I was growing up, I always aimed to play for my country. Obviously, as I've been playing for United, one of the biggest clubs in the world, I did hope I would receive the call. I'm really happy to get called up. I could have been involved last month for the Faroe Islands and Greece games, so it's great I've been recalled to join the squad for Romania.
It's not immediately clear whether McNair will make his debut, however. Northern Ireland, a touch surprisingly, are currently top of their qualifying group with a perfect record, three wins from three. Still, he's only young. Plenty of time and emergency Manchester United appearances yet.