Jimmy Dunne was delighted to receive his first international call-up but knows that the hard work has to continue.

Dunne is flying to Dublin today to join up with his team-mates for two matches with Republic of Ireland U21s.

The on-loan Burnley defender has impressed at the Wham Stadium since arriving in January, but the 20-year-old says he will have to prove himself again now he’s on the international scene.

“It’s my first call-up and I’m very excited about it,” said the 20-year-old. “We have a friendly game against Iceland and a competitive qualifier against Azerbaijan – I’m really looking forward to flying over and meeting up with the squad.

“I was at home when I found I had been selected, my U23s manager called and congratulated me, he told me that the hard work starts even more so now.

“It’s another step for me, something that I can look forward to and if I get onto the pitch at some stage then I have go to out there and prove myself again.”

Dunne has played a huge part in a Stanley side that has taken 34 points from a possible 39, since the start of 2018. But the centre back has praised his team-mates for helping him receive international recognition.

“It was hard enough just to get into the team in the first place,” he added. “I thought to myself ‘once I get in I’ve go to the prove to the manager than I can stay there and help the team out’ – hopefully I’ve been able to do that.

“We were disappointed not to keep a clean sheet against Forest Green, but when you have got lads with the spirit that we have, then you always believe you will win the game.

“Playing with those kind of players has definitely played a massive part for me and really helped me settle in and improve.”