Receiving a senior international call-up before making your first-team debut is the marker of a big talent, and that is the case for Liverpool’s Conor Bradley.
It is a strange phenomenon, one enjoyed by Javier Mascherano, who made his breakthrough with Argentina in 2003 before playing a single minute for River Plate.
With more managers showing faith in youth and some taking drastic measures to freshen up their squads, it could be seen more frequently, particularly for those with a smaller talent pool.
That is the case for Northern Ireland boss Ian Baraclough, who has named Bradley among an uncapped trio for their upcoming clashes with Malta (May 30) and Ukraine (June 3).
They link up with a more experienced group for the behind-closed-doors friendlies, including Stuart Dallas, Kyle Lafferty and Craig Cathcart.
It is not the first time Baraclough has relied on young players yet to play senior club football, with midfielder Ethan Galbraith debuting for Northern Ireland in 2019, two months before his first outing for Man United.
Whether Bradley will feature against Malta or Ukraine remains to be seen, though he has a strong chance if Dallas is to start in his more natural role at left-back.
Bradley has been a regular for the under-23s throughout his second campaign with the club, but was drafted into the under-18s squad for the cup as he was still eligible to feature.
The teenager has also trained with the first team at Kirkby on a number of occasions, and played in the intra-squad friendly during the March international break.