Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford open to dropping down to England U21s for summer Euros

Simon Peach
Rashford trains with England's senior squad ahead of their World Cup qualifier against Lithuania: Getty Images

Marcus Rashford would be keen to represent England Under-21s at this summer's European Championship if the powers that be decide that is best for his development.

In the 13 months since bursting onto the scene so remarkably, the 19-year-old has racked up 56 appearances for Manchester United, won seven caps and established himself as one of the country's most exciting talents.

Rashford was fast-tracked into Roy Hodgson's Euro 2016 squad and he could well be involved in continental competition again this summer, at the Under-21 European Championship in Poland.

The striker scored a hat-trick on his one and only U21s appearance to date and would have been with the Young Lions rather than Gareth Southgate's senior side this week were it not for injuries to Harry Kane and Daniel Sturridge.

Instead, Rashford could now start Sunday's World Cup qualifier agains Lithuania - ahead of which the forward expressed an openness to dropping back down to the U21s in the summer.

"It is up to the coaching staff and the managers to decide if I go to that," he said in an interview with BBC Radio 5 live and talkSPORT.

"But if I do go, I'll be approaching it with the same attitude as I do to the seniors. It is exciting times.

"Getting tournament experience is massive, as long as everything is aiming towards the long-term objective, we obviously want to be successful and win trophies.

"So whatever we have to do to get to that, whether it is going down to gain the experience, everyone is happy to do that."

Whether United boss Jose Mourinho is as open to that is another matter given the Red Devils' bloated schedule until the end of the campaign.

It has, Rashford says, been a "season full of ups and downs" for club and country, giving the striker precious little time to take stock of his incredible ascent.

"Time goes very fast and it is about what you do in that time," he said.

"All my focus is just on trying to improve for the future and to make history for my club and the country.

"On the journey, as the year goes by, sometimes you look back and you think about what has happened in the past, but at this stage you are fully focused on what you need to do in the future."

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