Manchester United prospect Shea Lacey called up to England under-16s

Manchester United youngster Shea Lacey has been called up to the England under-16s squad for a mid-season tournament in Spain.

Lacey is one of Manchester United’s most highly rated prospects, who shone for the club’s under-16s side in the Adidas Generation Cup in America earlier in 2022.

The skilful youngster had previously been involved at under-15 level with England, where he scored two goals in four games, and now he is stepping up a level with the Three Lions.

Photo by Manchester United/Manchester United via Getty Images

Manchester United have high hopes for Lacey, who will benefit from this experience with the England under-16s side at the end of this month.

Lacey has already made his debut for Manchester United’s under-18s side, a sign of how the club want to push him up the ranks for the benefit of his development.

He came off the bench for the final 15 minutes in the 2-2 draw against Newcastle at the end of September, a 2-2 draw which saw Ethan Williams and Adam Berry score the goals.

Lacey was introduced along with young Spain international Victor Musa and English prospect Zach Baumann.

Lacey call-up mirrors Bellingham

The England under-16 call-up for Lacey is notable in the context of the senior side’s World Cup campaign getting underway against Iran on Monday.

Jude Bellingham was the opening goalscorer in England’s 6-2 win in Qatar, but back in summer 2018, the senior squad was just a dream when the last World Cup was underway in Russia.

In July 2018 when England were in the World Cup semi-finals, Bellingham was called up to England’s under-16 squad for the first time. He went onto score three goals in 11 games. Like Lacey is now, he was 15 at the time.

Fast-forward to 2022 and Bellingham is an established star for club and country, one of the most coveted players in the world.

He is an inspiration for every single one of the players called up into the England under-16s squad this week, including Shea Lacey, of how quickly a career can take off.

In four years time one of these stars could be excelling for England at World Cup 2026. Lacey must work hard to ensure he is the one.

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