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Rising star Kobbie Mainoo ponders playing for England or Ghana after Man United breakthrough

Manchester United midfield prodigy Kobbie Mainoo is sparking a tug-of-war between England and Ghana for his international allegiance, according to the Daily Mail.

The Stockport-born star has set tongues wagging after his impressive run in the Premier League.

Despite garnering interest from England manager Gareth Southgate, the 18-year-old is in no rush to decide where he will commit his international future. 

The Jimmy Murphy Young Player of the Year is eligible for both nations through his parents.

Mainoo is open to representing England. He has featured at various youth levels for the European nation, but won’t commit until he is confident of regular senior appearances.

Ghana FA Board member Randy Abbey has expressed their desire to lure Mainoo to the Black Stars, where he would link up with West Ham United star Mohammed Kudus. 

However, England are confident they can retain him.

Mainoo’s decision is expected closer to the European Championship in June, with England’s upcoming friendlies and Nations League matches unlikely to feature him.

Southgate sees Mainoo’s future as an attacking midfielder, competing with Jude Bellingham and Phil Foden for a starting place rather than defensive midfielders Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips. 

An under-21 call-up next month for their qualifiers also seems likely given his recent form.

Which country should Kobbie Mainoo play for?

England is a prestigious footballing stage for the young starlet, but Mainoo may find Ghana’s path to senior minutes far smoother. 

Despite his impressive form, breaking into a star-studded England midfield that already boasts Bellingham and Foden will be incredibly difficult. 

Ghana presents a quicker route to regular playing time. The Black Stars are rebuilding after consecutive early Africa Cup of Nations exits, and Mainoo’s recent performances have caught their eye. 

He would garner experience with the African nation and potentially help them secure their first AFCON title since 1982. 

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