Marcus Rashford is prepared to defy Manchester United manager José Mourinho and play for England at the summer's Under-21 European Championships. The 18-year-old has won seven senior caps but is available to be selected in Aidy Boothroyd's squad for the tournament in Poland.
Reports have suggested that the Football Association's chief executive Martin Glenn wants Rashford to gain more experience by playing in the competition ahead of the World Cup next summer. The Three Lions have been drawn against hosts Poland, Slovakia and Sweden in Group A.
Mourinho has reservations over Rashford playing in the event, claiming it "makes no sense" for the United forward to take a backward step in his international career. But the teenager is refusing to rule out making himself available.
"It is up to the coaching staff and the managers to decide if I go to that," Rashford told BBC Radio Five Live. "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 it."
Rashford has been included in Gareth Southgate's squad for the international double-header against Germany and Lithuania. Meanwhile, he is a central part of the United first team having played 38 times this season in all competitions.
Participation in the Under-21 finals would raise the tantalising possibility of Rashford playing in an international tournament in three consecutive summers. He was a surprise inclusion in England's Euro 2016 squad and would be considered a contender to feature in the World Cup in Russia in 2018.
The schedule could risk Rashford suffering from burnout barely a handful of years into his career. United boss Mourinho was talking with The FA over any decision to call-up his striker, leading to a possible club vs country row.
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