English Premiership

Young: Shaw can be world class if he works hard

2018-03-22 07:24
Luke Shaw (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Manchester United’s wing-back Ashley Young believes under fire Luke Shaw has the potential to be "one of the best in the world" if he works hard.

Young was speaking after taking Shaw’s left-back spot in the latest England squad named by Gareth Southgate this week ahead of two upcoming friendlies against Holland and Italy.

Shaw, 22, has had a tough time in recent months with United manager Jose Mourinho publicly chastising him on a number of occasions as he continues his comeback from a horrific broken leg suffered in 2015.

The latest incident saw Mourinho blast Shaw after he was substituted at half-time of Saturday's FA Cup quarter-final win over Brighton.

Shaw, who moved to Old Trafford from Southampton in 2014, now faces a battle to make Southgate’s Russia squad.

Still, Young insisted that Shaw has what it takes to succeed at the highest level and just needs to keep his head down and concentrate on his game.

"Obviously he is a player that wants to do well, I want to see him doing well,” said Young. "It's like all players, you just have to get your head down and work.

"He is a fantastic player. I feel he can be one of the best in the world.

"As I say, you've just got to work hard."

While the duo are vying for the same wing-back position at Old Trafford, Young said that competition for places is a good thing.

"Of course, everybody in the squad pushes each other on," Young said.

"We've got a healthy competition in our squad and when you've got world-class players training day in, day out, everybody wants to be in that team.

"Everybody wants to be in that starting XI.

"It is tough. I've always said, when you join a club like United it's a tough place to play at. But if you play and you train there and give 100 percent, then get your opportunity and I've always said you always get your opportunity there."

The 32-year-old former Aston Villa winger said he is delighted with his form, his recent return to international football and possibly even a World Cup spot.

"I feel like I am playing with confidence, I have done all season," Young said. "I've been playing more than I thought I would.

"It's obviously credit to the manager (Mourinho). He's put me in the team and I've stayed there. I've wanted to cement my place in the team and, like you say, I am back in the England squad, which I am delighted to be in.

"There's a World Cup at the end of it. Who knows what's going to happen? I've just got to be impressive to the England manager and hopefully be on that plane. I've just got to keep playing as well as I can, and I'll just have to wait and see."

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