Roy Hodgson explains decision to play Luke Shaw in England U21s is due to important game

by Sam Peoples

Roy Hodgson has explained his decision to let Luke Shaw play with England’s Under-21s in the upcoming international break rather than with the seniors.

The 19-year-old has been named in Gareth Southgate’s squad for England’s crucial European Under-21s qualifiers as has Manchester United duo Michael Keane and Sam Johnstone.

Shaw was part of England’s squad at the World Cup but Hodgson believes he can gain a lot from playing the crucial Under-21s games.

“I think they belong to the senior squad,” Hodgson said.

“They’ve got the qualities to be in the senior squad and had there not been these two very important U-21 matches, which decide the fate of the U-21 team, then both of them would have been in this squad. I’ve made that clear to both of them.

“But it’s important that players, especially when they’re young, that when they break in to the first team squad, they know that doesn’t give them an automatic right to always be there.

“I’ve made it clear that, come November, they will both be serious candidates to be back involved in this squad. I’m hoping that both of them will strengthen the U-21 team and make sure that we qualify.”

Away from the prying eyes and pressure of the England senior side, Shaw should be able to concentrate on regaining his fitness for after the international break.

Image: Twitter/SkySports

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