Manchester United star Mason Greenwood has grown in stature to become an ‘influential presence and boisterous voice’ within the club’s dressing room, according to reports. The England international won’t be participating in the upcoming European Championships due to a groin injury. But that’s a boost to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, whose teenage talent will now get some much-needed time off.
England named their squad for Euro 2020 last night, with Gareth Southgate looking to win a first trophy for the nation since the days of Sir Bobby Charlton and Co. back in 1966.
But, before the announcement, it was revealed Greenwood wouldn’t be going due to injury.
The United star experienced a strong end to the campaign, scoring five goals from his final 10 matches.
But, having played 52 times across all competitions, he’ll now be able to enjoy a calm summer with some much-needed time off in order.
It’s a groin injury that has prevented him from making Southgate’s squad, with forwards such as Harry Kane, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Marcus Rashford, Raheem Sterling, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka going instead.
And The Athletic has now revealed that, over at United, Greenwood has evolved off the pitch – as well as on it.
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The 19-year-old is said to have ‘grown to become an influential presence within the dressing room’.
And it’s also claimed he’s become vocal on the team bus to and from matches, showing he’s growing in confidence as well.
He’s one of the youngest players within the United squad yet has already played 105 times for the club across all competitions since making his debut in March 2019.
Now, United are hopeful a summer of rest will do him good.
Greenwood was picked by England for a World Cup qualifying match against Iceland last September, coming off the bench during that match.
However, he then made the headlines for all the wrong reasons after being sent home following a breach of coronavirus rules – as well as Phil Foden.
It initially took Greenwood some time to rediscover his best form, with Solskjaer deserving credit for still picking the youngster.
And United believe a summer of rest will do him the world of good, especially with the club looking to win the Premier League title next time out.
England boss Southgate, meanwhile, opened up on Greenwood on Tuesday – admitting his injury was unfortunate.
He said: “Mason Greenwood unfortunately had to pull out on Friday, so we knew he wasn’t a contender over the last few days”
“I spoke to Ole and Mason last Friday.
“It’s unfortunate for Mason to miss out on any tournament, even though he’s young. These opportunities don’t come around very often.
“We know what an exciting player he can be but it wasn’t an option for us.”
Southgate also admitted anything less than a semi-final spot will make England’s campaign a failure, adding: “Yeah, it probably will.
“I think we’re realistic about that, we have to live with that expectation. We know the excitement around the team and it’s great, we’re now relevant.
“Expectations were lower (in Russia). We’ve got some exciting players and I don’t think these players are at their peak by any means.
“I think when I look at some of the players working with us it’s so exciting for England in the future.
“I’ve got to try to manage the expectations for the players. I accept the situation as a manager, there’s expectation, I have to deliver.
“We have to deliver as a group of staff, it’s not about me in terms of if we can be successful. But, of course, it’s about me if we fail. No problem, that’s the gig.
“But for the players, I’ve still got to bear in mind they are a young group, they have still got a lot of progression to make, some are now learning how to win things, being involved in big matches.
“It’s brilliant for their progress and opportunities for England, that’s what we want.
“Are we ready to win? Well, we’ve been to two semi-finals so the next step is to try to go further.”