Mason Greenwood opted out of England selection until next year as Three Lions manager Gareth Southgate explained the Manchester United sensation’s international absence.
Greenwood has not been included in England’s squad for upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Albania (November 12) and San Marino (November 15).
The 20-year-old forward has not played for England since his debut in September last year, which saw Greenwood sent home along with Phil Foden after the pair breached COVID-19 regulations by inviting two women to the team hotel.
Southgate told reporters Greenwood asked not to be considered for international selection during the first half of this season.
Confirming your #ThreeLions squad for November!
— England (@England) November 4, 2021
“We had a discussion before the camp in September and we came to an agreement,” Southgate said. “John McDermott [the FA’s technical director] and myself went to United and had a good chat with Mason and his family and we agreed we would park this until next year, basically. We would leave the autumn games.
“If he establishes himself in Manchester United’s team then he is going to be very close to an England squad or an England team so he recognises that. He wants to play for England. He is clear about that.
“We are not not picking Mason because we don’t think he’s good enough or we are not happy with what he requested. We are totally understanding of that and we are happy to wait.
“Also we have seen lots of youth development and this is his and his family’s one and only chance, so they are understandably more cautious than we might be. We believe these boys can be very big players for England in the long term and we don’t want to get it wrong in the short term.”
Greenwood has scored four goals in nine Premier League appearances for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United this season.
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