Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin has criticised the decision by England bosses to leave Marcus Rashford out of the squad for the upcoming European U-21 Championships in Poland.
Bellerin, 22, is part of the Spain squad for the tournament, which also features the likes of Real Madrid’s Champions League final goalscorer Marco Asensio and Atletico’s Saul Niguez.
The Spaniard believes that any player should have to prove himself at U-21 level before making the step up to the senior team.
Bellerin told the Daily Mail: “‘You can see so many players who people think could be in the first team, like Asensio at Real Madrid and Saul, who has played more than a 100 games for Atletico.
“It’s a great approach because it humbles you. If you want to be in the first team you have to show how much you’re worth at U21 level.”
Rashford was left out of the squad by England manager Aidy Boothroyd to the delight of Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho, who felt the player needed a rest after a long season with club and country.
Bellerin disagrees though: “It’s not about age, if Marcus Rashford is ready for England then he should play. ‘Sometimes taking it slowly, taking a player through the paces is the best way to keep him wanting more.
“If you’re there from the beginning, what else can you achieve?”
The Championships get underway later today with England facing Sweden before Poland play Slovakia.