KOBB DONE Kobbie Mainoo called up to England squad for first time as Man Utd wonderkid is late addition to Gareth Southgate’s camp

Southgate came under fire from a prominent pundit for excluding the youngster last week

KOBBIE MAINOO has been called up to the England squad for the first time.

The youngster is a late addition to the team following Gareth Southgate’s official squad announcement last week.

Kobbie Mainoo has been called up to the England squad for the first time
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Kobbie Mainoo has been called up to the England squad for the first timeCredit: Getty

The midfielder has previously represented England at Under-19 level
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The midfielder has previously represented England at Under-19 levelCredit: PA

Mainoo has impressed this season
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Mainoo has impressed this season
Mainoo, 18, was initially called up to Lee Carsley’s Under-21 squad and has played for England U19s previously.

But Southgate appears to have had a change of heart and has brought Mainoo into his squad as a precaution.

Mainoo reacted to the news by sharing an image of himself in England attire alongside the caption: “It’s an honour to receive my first senior call up 🙏🏾🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿”

The Manchester United wonderkid now has the opportunity to make his debut against Brazil on Saturday, or against Belgium on Tuesday.

He is the third player in the current squad to be called up for the first time along with Jarrad Branthwaite and Anthony Gordon.

It is the latest step for Mainoo in his meteoric rise, which has seen the midfielder barely miss a game since breaking into the United first-team in November.

Mainoo has caught the eye with his performances and now has the chance to stake his claim to be included in the squad for Euro 2024.

Ian Wright is a big fan and last week criticised Southgate for leaving Mainoo out of the squad.

Southgate, 53, opted instead for Declan Rice, Jordan Henderson, Conor Gallagher, Jude Bellingham and James Maddison in midfield – as Kalvin Phillips also got snubbed.

However, the Three Lions boss was asked about Mainoo’s exclusion and he replied by hinting he was not far away from a call-up.

Southgate said: “There are some players who are doing exceptionally well, the likes of Kobbie Mainoo, Harvey Elliott, Rico Lewis. Archie Gray is doing really well at Leeds.

“I think [Mainoo] is doing brilliantly for a young player.

“We’re never slow to put a young player into the seniors but he’s only had a handful of games, so you have to be very careful.

“We feel we should give him the space to develop at his own speed.

“But he’s having some wonderful experiences at Manchester United and seems a very good character.”

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