The last time Ashley Young pulled on an England shirt was in 2013, four years ago. He came on as a substitute for Jack Wilshere in 0-0 draw against Ukraine in September, 2013. He had suffered the disappointment of being left out of Fabio Capello’s squad for 2010 World Cup. He wasn’t even in contention for the 2014 world cup squad. Now, he has a big chance to make to Russia next summer, if he continues with his strong performances for Manchester united.
The Manchester United man said, “I never once shut the door on England or thought that the door was shut. I’ve shown I am ¬deserving of a place in the ¬England squad but I don’t just want a place in the squad, I want to be in the team.”
Young rarely started at United in Jose Mourinho’s first season, as he only made eight league starts. He was also not available for the club’s Europa League win over Ajax. But he has returned to the starting XI in recent weeks, in a new left wing-back role, and his displays have been sufficiently impressive to earn him a first England call-up since 2013.
He said, “It was disappointing, but I have never thought about leaving the club. I’ve always got that determination to get back in the squad and get back playing.”
He was used as a wing-back by former United boss Louis van Gaal. He has been playing in this position since then – even under Mourinho. Despite a wish for an attacking position, Young is quite happy to have brought changes to his game.
Young gives the England manager a versatile player who can be very useful in many different ways. His skillset when used intelligently can prove to be deadly for any opposition. His consistency in his club performances will be key to his path to Russia.