United Youth

Manchester United Reserves & Academy News

Young Reds on international duty

Posted by nickogs20 on September 2, 2008

Danny WelbeckAll the focus from most United fans this international break will be on the senior players in action in World Cup Qualifiers (including a certain striker for Bulgaria…), but there are a number of youngsters also joining up with their countries over the next ten days.

After having Ryan Tunnicliffe and Zeki Fryers in action for the U17’s last week, the Reds supply five more youngsters to the England setup over the coming days. England U21s take on Portugal at Wembley on Friday night in their final Euro U21 2009 qualifier, knowing a point will be enough to take them through to the playoffs. Stuart Pearce once again includes ‘keeper Tom Heaton and striker Fraizer Campbell in his squad – they’ll both be earning their third U21 cap if they feature – and of further interest to United fans will be the inclusion of another academy product, Sylvan Ebanks-Blake, now plying his trade very successfully at Wolves. Senior internationals Joe Hart, Micah Richards, Aaron Lennon, Gabby Agbonlahor and Theo Walcott are also included, in what’s a very strong selection.

The Under-19’s meanwhile face the Netherlands in a friendly as a warm-up to their European Championship qualifiers in October (where they will face Northern Ireland, Serbia and Albania in Belfast). The game will be held at Shrewsbury Town’s ProStar Stadium on Tuesday September 9th, and included in Brian Eastick’s squad are stopper Ben Amos, in-form midfielder Danny Drinkwater and fit-again forward Danny Welbeck. With the U19 Euros (should England qualify) and the U20 World Cup on the horizon next summer, this could be the start of an amazing season for the young trio at international level.

Away from England, Federico Macheda and Davide Petrucci returned to their home city Rome on Sunday (Aug 31) for an Italy U18s training camp that runs until Thursday. Young Italians playing abroad have often struggled to gain recognition at youth international levels in the past so to be involved is a big boost for both the pair and those responsible for their past and future development at Carrington.

United have a strong recent history of producing young Northern Irish talent and we have representation again moving into the new season, with U16s midfielder John Gorman being called up for Northern Ireland U17s away double-header against Sweden, the matches being held tonight (Sep 2) and Thursday (Sep 4). Craig Cathcart and Corry Evans are once again in the U21 squad for their final qualifier against Germany in Wuppertal on Friday (Sep 5), where a win will give NI a chance of progressing to the play-offs. Jonny Evans is in the senior squad as expected. NI also have two U19 friendlies against Iceland next week but as yet no squad list appears to have been officially announced.

Finally (for now), Germany’s Under-20s play Austria in a friendly tomorrow (Sep 3) in Gütersloh, and Ron-Robert Zieler is selected in what is a very similar squad to the U19 group that won the Euro U19s this summer.

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