COLCHESTER United attacking duo Callum Harriott and Kwame Poku have been called up for international duty.

Harriott has been selected in the Guyana squad for the opening matches of their World Cup qualifying campaign.

And Poku has been picked by Ghana for their forthcoming 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against South Africa and Sao Tome and Principe.

It is the first time that the 19-year-old attacker has been called into the Black Stars squad.

Harriott and Poku are expected to miss Colchester's forthcoming League Two matches against Port Vale and Tranmere Rovers.

However, it is thought Harriott could return for the home clash with Bradford City, on Saturday week.

Speaking prior to Poku's call-up for Ghana, U's interim boss Wayne Brown admitted Harriott will be a big miss but has challenged others to shine in the winger's absence.

Brown said: “Callum is a big player for us – there’s no doubting that.

“He will be a big miss for us but we have competent and able bodies who are chomping at the bit to get into the team and want the shirt and come in and fill his boots.

“That’s the sort of mentality that you want to try and create and I feel that it’s getting better as a group and I’m sure whoever comes in will try and keep the shirt from Callum.”

Harriott, 27, who has won seven caps for Guyana, is set to be involved in their Group F games against Trinidad and Tobago (March 25) and Bahamas (March 31).

Writing on Twitter, he said: 'Delighted to be called up again for @GFF_Inc_Looking forward too these @FIFAWorldCup qualifiers #CH11

Poku, 19, will be hoping to be involved in Ghana's games against South Africa (March 25) and Sao Tome and Principe (March 29).

The skilful attacker has found himself out of Colchester's starting line-up of late and was not involved in either of the club's last two games, at Salford City and Grimsby Town.

When asked about Poku on Thursday afternoon prior to him being selected for Ghana, boss Brown said: "You want to create an environment where it's going to be tough to get into the team, if the lads are doing the business on the pitch and they keep the shirt.

"All we do is we go out and pick 18 players in the squad - and 11 to start the game and subs - to try and win the game of football.

"That won't change - it won't change on Saturday and it won't change against Tranmere, on Tuesday.

"That's the position we're in and when you have got maybe 20 lads that have been in and around it all season, there is going to be disappointment and lads being left out but that's the nature of the beast."