Jadon Sancho has forced English football into some serious soul searching after his move to Borussia Dortmund.
That is the view of Gary Lineker who was a trailblazer in the 1980s when he went to Barcelona and admits he is surprised more English players do not go overseas.
Lineker is full of praise for Sancho’s attitude but he also believes that big Premier League clubs will now have to give youngsters more of a chance than risk seeing a talent drain to the Bundesliga.
BT Sport presenter Lineker said: “I went abroad but not at that age! It’s unquestionable that it broadens the horizons. There’s pros and cons to it.
“The pros are that the players will gain great experience, especially in good clubs in good leagues, like the Bundesliga and playing for good clubs. I think it’s a great thing.
“Jadon Sancho looks one hell of a player. He really does. Callum Hudson-Odoi is different again but he’s a wonderfully talented player and Phil Foden was at the event on Monday night. I sat with him and he’s another one I think he’ll play more and more as time progresses.
“I think it’s great to have young players abroad. Reiss Nelson is there as well, then it looked like Hudson-Odoi was going to go, that didn’t happen. It’s an interesting turn of events.
“But we have to look at it and think: ‘why are our young players having to go over there?’ Why are we not giving them the opportunity as quickly here if they’ve got the talent.
“I suppose that’s because we do splash out so much money on anybody coming in, rather than promote our own but I think that will change because of the quality we’ve got coming through.
“If you’re good enough you’ll get the games. You will. The real cream always comes out. I really believe that. If you’re that good. But most players don’t really play really play regularly until they are 21, 22 or 23.
“It’s already started to change at some clubs like Tottenham and Liverpool in particular which is a really good thing. We’ve been through a period where hardly any of our players have been abroad for quite a while.
“For me, it was great. It was such a great learning curve, playing a different style of football, having to adapt to a different pace of the game and also adapting off the field, an opportunity to learn the language which was great.
“It broadens your horizons in all sorts of different ways. To go young like that as well. It’s clearly worked for them. They’re obviously very talented but also have the mentality as well.”
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