Timothy Fosu-Mensah made his Netherlands U21s debut in a European Championship qualifier 4-1 win over Cyprus on Tuesday.
The 18-year-old started at centre-back alongside former Manchester City youngster Karim Rekik and completed the full 90 minutes, picking up a yellow card along the way just before the hour mark.
Having played for and captained the U17s and U18s Netherlands side previously, this is the next step in the right direction for Fosu-Mensah with his international career.
Netherlands boss Danny Blind did give Fosu-Mensah a senior call-up last year after his impressive breakthrough with Manchester United but injury robbed him of taking that opportunity which was a shame. However, it’s only a matter of time before he gets that chance again.
In terms of his position, it’s interesting to see him played at centre-back by Netherlands’ U21s boss Art Langeler, currently PSV Eindhoven’s academy director, because he hasn’t played there for some time at Man United. That being said, he was used there plenty in the lower age groups at United so he’s accustomed to it and I’d say it is his second best position behind defensive midfield.
I’ve got a lot of love for Fosu-Mensah because I’ve watched his development closely since he arrived from Ajax as a 16-year-old and I’m looking forward to seeing how he can continue to develop this year under Jose Mourinho.