Luke Shaw: Ashley Young says Man Utd team-mate can be ‘one of the best in the world’

Luke Shaw has made 15 appearances for Manchester United this season
International friendly: Netherlands v England
Venue: Amsterdam Arena, Amsterdam Date: Friday, 23 March Time: 19:45 GMT
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Manchester United defender Luke Shaw can be “one of the best in the world”, says team-mate Ashley Young.

Shaw, 22, was publicly criticised by manager Jose Mourinho after he was substituted during Saturday’s 2-0 FA Cup quarter-final win over Brighton.

Young, 32, has been Mourinho’s first-choice left-back for much of the season and – unlike Shaw – was named in the England squad for their friendlies against the Netherlands and Italy.

“He’s a fantastic player,” said Young.

Shaw, who joined United from Southampton for £27m in 2014, is under contract until June 2019 but could leave Old Trafford this summer.

Mourinho has criticised Shaw repeatedly in the past, and publicly questioned the defender’s approach to training and his commitment to the club last April.

Shaw, who has seven international caps, has not played for England since March 2017.

“I want to see Luke do well,” said Young. “He just has to get his head down and work.

“I feel he can be one of the best in the world.”

‘Best way for a manager to be’ – Young on Mourinho

Young says United players know when they must work hard under Mourinho

Mourinho has been the subject of criticism himself, with former Arsenal striker Ian Wright telling BBC Radio 5 live he “would not want to play for Mourinho right now”.

United are second in the Premier League and in the FA Cup semi-finals, but went out of the Champions League last week, and former Chelsea forward Chris Sutton believes Mourinho looks “outdated”.

But the 55-year-old looks to have the backing of his players, with Young saying his team-mates know where they stand.

“The manager has been successful at every club he’s been at,” he said.

“I don’t think he would have been that successful if he didn’t know how to handle players.

“We know as players we go out onto the training pitch and work hard, but when you can, he has a laugh and joke, so he’s got both sides to him and that’s the best way for a manager to be.”

‘I’ve got to impress’ – Young on England call-up

Ashley Young has made 30 appearances in all competitions for United this season

Young was named in the England squad ahead of team-mate Shaw after impressing in recent United games, including the 2-1 victory over Liverpool earlier this month for which Gareth Southgate was in attendance.

On Monday, United triggered a one-year extension clause in Young’s contract, which will keep him at the club until the summer of 2019.

His last international appearance came in last November’s 0-0 draw with Brazil at Wembley, after a four-year absence from the squad.

He missed out on the 2014 World Cup and is keen to be involved when Southgate announces his team for this summer’s tournament in Russia.

“I’ve always wanted to represent my country, it’s an honour to do so, and whenever I get that chance, I’ll keep doing it,” said Young.

“I’ve got to play well at United to get that recognition, and now I’ve had that in this call-up, I’ve got to impress.

“I’ve got to show the manager I should get a place in the squad.”

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