English FA confident Mainoo will snub Ghana for England
The Football Association believe ‘super professional’ Manchester United youngster Kobbie Mainoo will prioritise playing for England over Ghana.
Mainoo’s profile soared on Sunday after United boss Erik ten Hag handed the 18-year-old his full senior debut in the 3-0 win at Everton.
The teenager impressed before being substituted in the 72nd minute with United already leading 2-0.
Mainoo, born in Stockport, has represented England at junior level up to the Under-19s - but is eligible to play for Ghana.
But sources close to the national team’s HQ in Burton are confident Mainoo’s intention is to remain on England’s pathway with the player providing no reason for the FA to fear he would consider playing for Ghana in the long term.
The midfielder has become a regular at St George’s Park in recent years and has left technical staff convinced that he wants an international career with England.
Mainoo has impressed coaches at England’s training facility, not only with his ability, but work-ethic as well.
He is described as being ‘super professional, focused and not a moment’s bother’ by those who have worked with him at St George’s with many believing he is worthy of being fast-tracked through the system into the Under-21s.
Declan Rice, Jude Bellingham and - to an extent - Kalvin Phillips remain central to England’s midfield options at senior level.
But beyond the trio, it is an area senior head coach Gareth Southgate admits his squad are lacking - though Aston Villa youngster Jacob Ramsey is also interesting the England boss.
Lee Carsley’s Under-21s don’t play again until March, when they face Azerbaijan and Luxembourg and Mainoo is expected to be in contention for a place in the squad if he continues to feature regularly for United’s first team.