Jarrad Branthwaite has heaped praise on Jordan Pickford this season.
Speaking to Everton after their draw to Sheffield United, the defender shared his excitement at playing in front of the goalkeeper.
Branthwaite joined the Toffees from Carlisle United in 2020 but had only managed a handful of appearances for the senior team before he was sent out on loan to PSV last season.
His spell in the Netherlands appeared to kickstart his senior career as he made 36 appearances including scoring twice on the road to their KNVB Cup glory.
The 21-year-old was in high demand when he returned to Merseyside and had even been linked with a move to Manchester United, however Everton managed to keep hold of him and he is now making his mark on the team.
Despite being benched for their opening two games, Branthwaite has lined up alongside James Tarkowski in the latter two and looks likely to have established himself as his captain’s regular partner.
MORE EVERTON STORIES
Jarrad Branthwaite loves every second playing in front of Pickford
While the team have struggled defensively so far this season, Branthwaite is relishing playing in front of Pickford and has admitted it is a ‘privilege’ to be his teammate.
Speaking to evertontv, the centre-back said: “It’s brilliant. You see the save at the end and that’s why he’s England’s No.1 as well. His ability with his feet, his saves; it’s a privilege to play in front of him.”
Branthwaite’s fine form over the last season earned him his first two caps for England U21s this year, though he was forced to withdraw from the squad for the current international break as he was set to undergo planned treatment with the Toffees.
Meanwhile, Pickford earned his 55th cap for the senior team as England were held to a 1-1 draw by Ukraine at the weekend. The 29-year-old is expected to be benched for the friendly against Scotland this evening.