England manager Gareth Southgate revealed that Ashley Young gained his trust after having been picked regularly for the national side by his predecessors. The 32-year-old had not featured for the Three Lions since 2013, but his form for United at left-back/left wing-back this season convinced Southgate into a recall.
In a report covered by The Mirror, Southgate insisted that he is open to offering opportunities to senior players despite playing emphasis on grooming young talent prior to next year’s World Cup, he said, “Generally speaking we want to look at younger players, and develop the team, but I’ve always said if a more senior player is playing well and warrants the call-up, we should include them. He’s a player every Manchester United manager has picked, and that tells me something about his mentality and the trust they have in him.”
Southgate’s squad involved plenty of surprise inclusions with the likes of Tammy Abraham, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, and Joe Gomez among the shock additions. Burnley’s Jack Cork also earned his maiden call-up to the Three Lions setup following his impressive form in the Premier League, where has propelled his side to seventh on the table – equal on points with Arsenal and Liverpool.
England take on Germany and Brazil in two star-studded friendlies in the month of November, but they are likely to be deemed underdogs having lost several key players including Harry Kane and Dele Alli through injury. The likes of Jordan Henderson, Raheem Sterling, and Harry Winks are also on the sidelines, and this does not make for a good hearing prior a game versus the World Champions.
Southgate’s side had a relatively simpler group to contend in the World Cup qualifiers unlike five-time World Cup winners Brazil, and their resolve is likely to be tested versus the South American side, who are flourishing in front of goal at the moment.