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Angel Gomes looking forward to the FIFA U17 World Cup; Manchester United will keep and eye on his progress

Angel Gomes is a player who has hit the headlines recently based on the fact he has now turned 17 and so far has not signed his first professional contract with Manchester United. Some will see this is a suggestion the player was not happy at the Old Trafford club, other will see that something similar happened with Wayne Rooney at the same age, making Everton wait around three months before signing professional terms.Manchester United’s Academy staff will be keeping a close eye on Angel Gomes when he competes for England at the Under-17 World Cup in India next month.

Gomes will be travelling with England to the FIFA U17 World Cup in India in October, which will be something the club’s Academy staff will be keeping an eye on, along with the rest of the world as the player became the youngest since Duncan Edwards to make his debut in the 2-0 victory over Crystal Palace at Old Trafford at the end of last season, Jose Mourinho including many youngsters in his side, resting player for the UEFA Europa League final days later.

United’s U18’s captain, Gomes, playing for the U19’s in the UEFA Youth League on Wednesday afternoon, scoring the second goal in a 2-1 victory, has been selected by England U17 coach, Steve Cooper for the finals, a warm up match being played against New Zealand on Sunday 1st October 2017 ahead of the group stage matches against Chile, Mexico and Iraq, the first match being played on Sunday 8th October (Chile), the second on Wednesday 11th October (Mexico), the third on Saturday 14th October (Iraq) which may see Gomes and England reach the latter stages.

The 17-year-old is in great form this season so far, scoring two goals, getting one assist in the two UEFA Youth League matches this season, scoring three more goals, also one assist in the U18 Premier League, which this early in the season shows that he is continuing to earn the plaudits. United U18 coach, Kieran McKenna, has spoken to the official Manchester United website about Gomes playing for England in the U17 World Cup, hoping that the age group will be inspired by the U20’s World Cup win earlier in the summer, saying:

“I know he’s looking forward to it. Unfortunately, he missed the European Championship at the end of last season with a little injury. But he’s captain of the group and a big part of what is a talented England side. 

“He’s looking forward to it and all the boys here will obviously be wishing him the best and keeping an eye on how he does. We’re hoping he makes a good impact on the tournament and will be ready to come back and kick on here again.

“I think he could be away for anything up to a month, with the preparation, as it’s quite similar to the senior World Cup really. The longer you go through the tournament, the longer it is with the difference being he probably doesn’t have any rest when it finishes.

“It comes in-season rather than at the end of the season like the senior World Cup and it’s important we look at how many matches he’s played. Once he’s had a short break, he’ll be back in with us to make an impression at this club as that’s the most important thing in his development and Angel knows that very well.”

There is no doubt that Gomes is not a talent in the game, not matter his age, and he will be determined to rise through the ranks. The talk at the moment is about the fact he is yet to sign a professional contract, but with the U17 World Cup coming in the next fortnight, perhaps United have postponed or even planned that talks commence when the player has returned to the Aon Training Complex once England U17’s are through in the competition, which hopefully, for the player’s development, will not be until after the final, returning with the trophy which is currently held by Nigeria, former Manchester City striker Kelechi Iheanacho winning the Golden Ball in the 2013 tournament, Nigeria retaining the trophy two years later.

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