manchester city star and academy graduate, phil foden

Ferdinand backs Foden for England starting role

Rio Ferdinand has backed Phil Foden for a starting role for England this summer, following the Manchester City midfielder’s performances this season.

Foden has starred since being handed a regular starting role for Pep Guardiola’s side this season, scoring 11 goals and providing a further seven assists across all competitions.

The 20-year-old was a stand-out performer as Manchester City booked their place in the last eight of the Champions League with a 2-0 win over Borussia Monchengladbach on Tuesday, providing an assist for Ilkay Gundogan’s goal with a wonderful turn and driving run.

It was the latest impressive showing from a young player brimming with potential, the academy graduate having grown in influence and importance at the Etihad during the current campaign.

Foden also broke into the senior England side last year and scored his first international goals with a brace against Iceland in November, and Ferdinand believes the midfielder’s talent and ‘experience of winning trophies’ should ensure he is a certain starter for the Three Lions at this summer’s European Championships.

“I think he plays, I think he has played himself into the [England] team,” Ferdinand said on BT Sport.

“I don’t think Gareth can sit there and say he isn’t going to be one of his first XI because of the numbers he is putting up.

“He is an influence on games, he is in the most in-form team in Europe who are going to win the Premier League as well.

“He will have that experience of picking up trophies that probably not a lot of players in that England team are going to have.

“He is almost one of the younger ones but with huge experience in terms of winning and getting over the line. I think he will be an important member of this squad.”

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