How James Garner fared on England under-21s debut

James Garner will be targeting more international appearances after making his Young Lions debut in last night’s 2-0 victory against Kosovo’s under-21 side.

The Manchester United loanee started Lee Carsley’s first game in charge in a midfield three alongside Oliver Skipp and Conor Gallagher.

The 20-year-old could have made his debut against Romania on Friday, but that match was called off due to two England under-21 players testing positive for coronavirus (The Mirror).

Photo by Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

How did Garner fare?

Playing on the left of the midfield three, Garner did venture forward and was often playing in front of Skipp and Gallagher.

It was a hardworking, probing and industrious display from the man on loan at Nottingham Forest.

He had 102 touches and completed 72 out of his attempted 81 passes (89%).

He had one shot on target, registered two clearances and made four tackles, which was more than any other England player (SofaScore).

Following in teammates footsteps

Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Garner was playing alongside two players who have already played starring roles for their Premier League sides this season, but he has to trust plying his trade in the Championship will reap the rewards in the Premier League.

After helping Norwich City secure promotion back to the top flight last season, Skipp has been ever present under new Tottenham boss Nuno Espirito Santo.

A full season on loan in the Championship, playing week in, week out, has benefited Skipp’s development and confidence.

After spending the 2019/20 season on loan between Charlton Athletic and Swansea City, Gallagher spent last season on loan at relegated West Bromwich Albion where he made 30 Premier League appearances (Transfermarkt).

This summer the Chelsea man signed a season-long loan at Crystal Palace where he has scored both of The Eagles’ Premier League two goals, which earnt them their first point under Patrick Vieira in a 2-2 draw at West Ham United.

What does Garner need to do?

Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images

Skipp and Gallagher’s Championship education will motivate Garner and a full season at The City Ground will stand him in good stead for regular Premier League football next season.

Whether that is at Old Trafford is another question. His main focus right now should be helping Chris Hughton’s side climb off the bottom of the Championship table and earn their first win of the season.

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Passionate Football fan that completed a NCTJ-accredited Diploma in Multimedia Sports Journalism in 2016.