Teenage midfielders in the Bundesliga and the English second tier have been selected in a much-changed England squad for UEFA Nations League games against Croatia and Spain.

Two of the three newcomers to the 25-man squad are Jadon Sancho, an 18-year-old winger playing at Borussia Dortmund, and Mason Mount, who is on loan from Chelsea at second-tier Derby County. Another attacking midfielder, 21-year-old playmaker James Maddison, also received a first call-up after impressing in his first season in the Premier League at Leicester.

Since taking charge of England in November 2016, Gareth Southgate — the former coach of England Under-21s — has not been afraid to select youngsters ahead of more experienced players.

FILE – In this Monday, Sept. 24, 2018 file photo, England soccer team coach Gareth Southgate arrives for the ceremony of the Best FIFA Football Awards in the Royal Festival Hall in London, Britain. England coach Gareth Southgate has signed a new contract that will keep him in charge of the national team through to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, it was announced on Thursday, Oct. 4. Southgate, whose deal was due to expire in 2020, has been rewarded for guiding England to the World Cup semifinals in Russia this year. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein, file)

Southgate says, “Very often we hold youngsters back a bit too much … it’s a good time in their development to train with us and see how they adapt.”

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Source: The Associated Press