Gareth Southgate explains decision to pick Ashley Young over Luke Shaw for England squad

by Harry Robinson

Gareth Southgate has commented on Manchester United’s current left-back situation.

The England boss called up veteran Ashley Young after a string of good performances in the side under Jose Mourinho in defence.

Young, who played most of his career as a winger, has adapted well, but some have questioned the necessity for him to do so given Mourinho has the option of talented, young English left-back Luke Shaw in the squad.

It would appear counter-intuitive for both Southgate and Mourinho to focus on the elder of the two players, though Young’s performances have been very good.

“I know Luke has made big strides with Jose, Jose is very pleased with him,” Southgate revealed.

“The reality is in the bigger matches Ashley Young gets the nod and I saw him against Liverpool, against [Mo] Salah, the other day. He was fantastic.”

Young defended against Salah almost to perfection against Liverpool in a fantastic game for Man United.

Mourinho has rarely called upon Shaw in any games, let alone big, meaningful fixtures. He has had little chance to prove himself, though obviously Mourinho is given an everyday iew of his progress in training.

When Shaw did get a run of games in the first team in December, he impressed. But with his confidence high and progress going well, Young came back in the side to replace him.

Hopefully Shaw is given more chances before the end of the season to ensure his progress is not stifled.

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