Gareth Southgate says he likes what he’s seen from Reiss Nelson, both during last year’s performances for Arsenal and this season at Hoffenheim, however, he’s warned the 18-year-old that there is fierce competition for a place in his senior England squad.
The young Gunners has taken Germany by storm, scoring five goals and grabbing an assist in ten appearances so far, an even better return than his best pal Jadon Sancho, who has also set tongues wagging with his performances for Borussia Dortmund.
While Sancho has been rewarded by Southgate with a second successive Three Lions call-up, Nelson will spend the upcoming Interlull with Aidy Boothroyd’s under-21s; for whom he impressed in October.
“We really like Reiss,” Southgate said on Thursday. “He came and trained with us in September.
“He is doing okay with Hoffenheim and we think that he and some other players in the Under-21s have got big futures.
“He always impressed me in the match time he got at Arsenal, he always had a really good impact whenever he played.
“I always liked his personality on the field and he is one of a number of attacking players who will push for places in the coming years, but he is not the only one and it is important we keep pushing him.
“I don’t want him to be thinking that he has just got to roll up and he’s the next one, because there is really good competition for places.
“Maddison and Mount won’t be there this time because of injury, but [Ryan] Sessegnon, [Demarai] Gray, [Dominic] Solanke and Phil Foden — you can go on.
“Then underneath that, you have got [Callum] Hudson-Odoi and Morgan Gibbs-White. There are some really exciting players coming through the system.”
Nelson will take on Italy and Denmark with England’s under-21s, while the senior squad, now without an Arsenal representative following Danny Welbeck’s horrible injury, will face the USA and Croatia.