Gareth Southgate: Mason Greenwood is a hugely exciting player

Gareth Southgate: Mason Greenwood is a hugely exciting player

Manchester United star Mason Greenwood has been given a show of faith from England manager Gareth Southgate who insists the player is ready for the step up.

The academy product has received his first call up to the senior team after an impressive season where he managed to hit double figures in goals.

Greenwood became instrumental to United’s success in the second half of the season as became a regular name in the starting XI.

Up until that point, the young attacker usually got his minutes coming off the bench or in cup competitions.

Greenwood did so well at one point that some fans even felt signing Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho was not as much of a priority.

According to the FA website, Southgate said: “They’ve been involved with England’s development teams, so they are used to coming here – they are used to being part of an England team.

“This is a step up for them, but they are both more than capable. You’re always questioning with those young players what is the right time to move them up.

“We felt now is a good time. We’re a year away from a European Championship, let’s see if they can start to break into that team and into that squad.

“It gives us great competition for places, they are realistic challengers. They’ve shown playing in big matches at big clubs that they are talented boys, they are both hugely exciting players I think.

“I think they’ll be a big part of England’s future. That is up to them, though. We give them the opportunity, then it’s up to them to go and take it forward.

“But there’s no reason why they can’t be involved with England for a long time to come.”

Greenwood certainly deserves his call up as it is a reward for an astonishing breakthrough season.

It’s easy to forget this is the dazzling teenager’s first season in senior football and he has quickly acclimatised to his new surroundings.

Hopefully, Southgate takes his time with Greenwood and protects him from any unnecessary pressure so he can successfully turn into a star for his country too.

The 18-year-old seems to take everything in his stride but it’s still better if he’s eased into things and not thrown into the deep end.

Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood have scored over 60 goals between them during the past season. But how much do you know about other strikers who played for the Red Devils over the years? Take our quiz below to find out.

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Freelance football writer and Football Manager enthusiast. Unhealthy obsession with tactics, debates and chasing after a ball with 21 other people.