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FootballWill Kobbie Mainoo Force His Way Into Gareth Southgate’s Euro 2024 Plans?

Will Kobbie Mainoo Force His Way Into Gareth Southgate’s Euro 2024 Plans?

This season’s Premier League title race is one for the ages. Current league leaders Arsenal, reigning champions Manchester City and a Liverpool side in the midst of its final-ever campaign under Jurgen Klopp are all going head to head for the crown and separated by just one point with a handful of games remaining. However, once that titanic clash draws to a close, all eyes will be on Germany for UEFA Euro 2024.

All three teams in title contention are known for bringing prestigious talents through their youth systems, none more so than Pep Guardiola’s Blues. In recent years it’s been the likes of Phil Foden and Rico Lewis, but before that, it was a certain Micah Richards, who was given plenty of props in a recent Richard Dunne interview with FourFourTwo. However, this season, it is their cross-city rivals that have made headlines for a talented new superstar who has announced his arrival on the global stage. That of course, is 18-year-old midfielder Kobbie Mainoo.

But, can the Red Devils prodigy force his way into Gareth Southgate’s midfield three this summer?

No Longer a Young Lion

Prior to the current international break, the teenage star was set to link up with England’s Under 21s for their European qualifiers against Azerbaijan and Luxembourg. However, in a surprising turn of events, senior boss Southgate decided that the time was now for Mainoo to join the full Three Lions setup for their friendlies against Brazil and Belgium on one of the final stops before the European Championships. Now, the question is, will he force his way into the starting eleven?

With the tournament just around the corner, two of the three midfield spots have already been claimed by Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice. The former has been on sensational form since his €100m to Real Madrid from Borussia Dortmund last summer, netting over 20 times in all competitions and becoming the first midfielder to net over 15 league goals for Los Blancos since the turn of the millennium. The latter meanwhile has been a cornerstone of the England team ever since forcing his way into the squad for UEFA Euro 2020, providing a crucial anchor in front of the defence as well as being able to link up play with the team’s playmakers.

England’s Third Midfield Spot

The third spot however remains up for grabs. Everyone is under no illusions as to how popular Jordan Henderson remains with Southgate, despite his advancing years and his botched move to Saudi Arabia. Then there is the option of playing Foden in a deeper role rather than a more attacking one like he does with his club.

But surely, the third midfield spot is there for the taking for Mainoo. He has proven for United this term that he is wise beyond his years and a reliable man to have in the middle of the park. Unlike Foden, he is unlikely to drift out of position and unlike Henderson, he has the ability and energy levels required to keep powering for the full 90 minutes. His displays against Brazil and Belgium will be crucial to his chances, but the door is wide open for him to become a key man for his country this summer.

Sam Allcock
Sam Allcock
With over 20 years of experience in the field SEO and digital marketing, Sam Allcock is a highly regarded entrepreneur. He is based in Cheshire but has an interest in all things going on in the North West and enjoys contributing local news to the site.
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