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Daggers’ Shields delighted with latest Northern Ireland under-21 call-up

PUBLISHED: 13:38 25 February 2014 | UPDATED: 13:38 25 February 2014

Dagenham & Redbridge's Sean Shields has been called up to represent Northern Ireland under-21s next month. Pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO

Dagenham & Redbridge's Sean Shields has been called up to represent Northern Ireland under-21s next month. Pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO

Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football Leagu

Dagenham & Redbridge midfielder Sean Shields has been called up for Northern Ireland under-21 duty next month.

Dagenham & Redbridge winger Sean Shields has been called up to feature for Northern Ireland under-21s next month and he hopes his latest national experience can put him to forefront of Wayne Burnett’s plans at Daggers.

The youngster already has two caps to his name, having featured in a 3-0 European qualifier against Cyprus back on May 30 last year as a substitute on the hour mark in Nicosia, before following that up with a 45 minute appearance in the 1-0 loss to Belgium in September.

Shields had been on standby for international duty on two other ocassions last year, but this time around has been drafted into Michael Robinson’s plans from the off for their scheduled qualifier against Italy next month at Mourneview Park, the home of Glenavon.

Signed on a three-year deal from St Albans back in January 2013, Shields has been a regular fixture on the Daggers bench this season.

But he did make his first start of the season in the 1-1 draw at Chesterfield in December, before also making an impact as Wayne Burnett’s side came back from 3-0 down to draw 3-3 against Scunthorpe United on January 25.

And the youngster has been happy with his progress he’s made so far this season.

“I feel I am getting better all the time,” said Shields. “Since the end of December and early January I have had a few more opportunitites, and I have been training hard like I always do and now for me it is time to push on and try to get more minutes on the pitch.

“I am delighted to get the call-up. It’ll be a good test as well against Italy so it’s just another great experience for me and hopefully another stepping stone in my career.

“For the Belgium game I was on standby and then I was called in to it. That was obviously a boost but to be named in the direct squad this time was another positive thing for me and shows that I have been doing well recently and I am really looking forward to it.”

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