England C team manager Paul Fairclough is impressed with how Braintree Town’s young stars have risen to the challenge of top-flight non-league football this year.

Fairclough has recognised the Iron’s achievements this year by selecting two Braintree players – Jai Reason and Kenny Davis – for Three Lions duty to face Gibraltar on Tuesday.

And with Ben Wright, Aswad Thomas, Andy Yiadom and Nathan McDonald in the stand-by contingency squad for the friendly, Fairclough is clearly impressed by what he has seen this year.

The national boss said: “There have been a lot of players apart from the Braintree lads who have done well and been on our radar.

“But Braintree is a club that has some really good young players."

See the paper this week to see the full version of this story and all the latest news and exclusive views on the Iron.