Arsenal forward Emile Smith Rowe and Chelsea winger Noni Madueke have had their cases for more club minutes championed by England U21 manager Lee Carsley.
After leading the Young Lions to a dominant victory over France U21s, England coach Carsley put the focus on goalscorers Smith Rowe and Madueke.
The former opened the scoring in a glorious 4-0 win as he played just over an hour, with injuries having restricted Smith Rowe to only 143 first-team minutes for Arsenal this season.
“I really like Emile, he’s a player with massive potential,” Carsley said.
“I think he showed in patches tonight that he’s a top player, now he just needs minutes, to play games and trust his body to train and play at a high level.
“He got about 65 minutes out there today, my plan will be that he gets more minutes on Tuesday.
“I’ve always thought that he was a strong character, any player that goes through an academy like Arsenal, forces their way into the team and wears number ten for them has got unbelievable character, determination and desire.
“That’s no mean feat, he deserves that because he’s a top talent, all he needs now is a run of games and that confidence and belief that his body’s capable of doing it.”
Madueke made it 2-0 soon after his introduction as a substitute for Smith Rowe, before laying on goals for Curtis Jones and Jacob Ramsey.
The 21-year-old has seemed like a largely pointless signing by Chelsea since joining in January but Carsley sees a bright future for Madueke.
“Seeing him get that goal and two assists was really pleasing,” he said.
“I think his style of play will really suit the Premier League. He’s exciting, fast, direct, and very versatile but what we have to remember is he is still young.
“He is going to need time, match minutes, the time to work on his game but he has high potential,” Carlsey continued, as quoted by the Metro.
“Like a lot of the younger players, he just needs an opportunity. They need opportunities to show that talent and given a run of games he will be fine.”
4 up v France, brazy 🏴 pic.twitter.com/G4M1vRpL0C
— Noni Madueke (@NoniMadueke_) March 25, 2023
It was a resounding return to form for England U21s, who had lost their most recent game 2-1 at home to Slovenia in Euro U21 qualifier.
Carsley’s side did finish top of the group however as that represented their only defeat in 10 games, with a draw against the Slovenians their only other slip.
The finals will be jointly held in Romania and Georgia from late June to early July. England have been drawn against Czech Republic, Germany and Israel.