Mehmet's big week

Deniz Mehmet is back on international duty this week as he tries to help Turkey in their challenge for the UEFA European Under-17 Championship in Germany.

The 16-year-old Academy goalkeeper should figure as the first-choice for Turkey as they start the eight-nation finals on Wednesday against the host nation in Group B. They then take on the Netherlands three days later before concluding their group fixtures against England on 12 May. The Young Lions have no West Ham players in their ranks - unlike every other England age group.

Mehmet was in good form in qualifying, keeping a clean sheet as Finland were beaten 2-0 at the 5 Ocak stadium in the Turkish town of Adana. That result, combined with Wales' 3-0 win over Romania in nearby Tarsus-Mersin, saw Mehmet's team top Elite qualifying round Group Six.

Turkey finished unbeaten, having earlier drawn 2-2 with Wales and 0-0 with Romania, on five points. Wales and Romania each finished on four points, with Finland coming fourth and bottom on three points.

Turkey have won the Under-17 tournament once before in 2005, beating the Netherlands 2-0 in Italy. They were losing semi-finalists last year, when they hosted the competition, going out on penalties to France in the last-four. Should Turkey finish in the top three in their group they will qualify for the 2009 FIFA U-17 World Cup to be played in Nigeria this October.

Spain, Italy, France and Switzerland will compete in Group A this week in Germany, with the top two progressing to the semi-finals to face the top two from Group A.