London, November 7: Liverpool defender Joe Gomez was taken by surprise when he found out about his "dream" England call-up for their forthcoming friendly fixtures.
The 20-year-old has been one of few Liverpool defenders to catch the eye so far this season, making eight starts in the Premier League.
His form is made all the more impressive by the fact he failed to make a single appearance in the top flight last season, with injuries restricting him to Under-23 action and three FA Cup games.
Now he looks set to make his England bow against either Germany or Brazil, and the former Charlton Athletic youngster is still letting it all sink in.
"It means a great deal for me personally," he told reporters.
"It has obviously been a dream of mine since I was a kid to represent my country at senior level.
"It was a surprise. I wasn't expecting the call-up but it was great news for me and my family, all of those close to me, and it is a dream come true."
Gomez is certainly not expecting an easy ride against Germany or Brazil but feels playing teams of such a standard gives England the best preparation for the World Cup.
"Everyone knows and is aware of how good they are," Gomez said. "At the same time, it is a good opportunity for us as England players to show that we can compete with them at that level.
"We can build up to the World Cup and try and get the best results we can in these friendlies to establish how good a team we can be as well.
"We know they are going to be tough games but we're ready for that."