Curtis Jones has been backed to keep his will-to-win attitude under control by England Under-21 boss Lee Carsley.
The Academy graduate, who was born in Liverpool, has a fierce competitive nature and on England duty last time out the youngster stepped out of line.
The 20-year-old received just four yellow cards in 34 games last season. And while he has yet to be red carded for the Reds, he was sent off in March whilst playing for then Aidy Boothroyd’s side.
Jones scored in the Group stage clash and England looked set to progress before Croatia netted in stoppage time. That goal was enough to knock Boothroyd’s men out of the UEFA Under-21 Championship. And in a melee afterwards Jones was dismissed after receiving a second yellow card after reacting angrily to Croatia’s celebrations.
Jones has managed to keep his emotions in check whilst playing for the Reds. And he has emerged as a first-team regular under Jurgen Klopp this season scoring in the 3-3 draw at Brentford and starring 5-1 win at Porto.
Speaking ahead of the England’s matches with Slovenia and Andorra, Carsley believes Jones is capable of channelling his aggression in the right manner.
“You want the players to be passionate,” Carsley said, via the Daily Mirror. “Sometimes it does boil over and there was a lot of frustration attached to that. It was, all-round, a frustrating and disappointing day for the U21s and England.
“These are young players and they are going to make mistakes. I remember myself as an 18-19 year old, very inconsistent with my attitude and temper. You have to learn from setbacks.
“He doesn’t give me the impression he is a player who can’t control his emotions. He is highly motivated and wants to win and we encourage that.”
Abada dreams of Liverpool
Elsewhere, Celtic winger Liel Abada admits that his ultimate dream is to play for Liverpool.
Abada arrived at Parkhead from Maccabi Petah Tikva over the summer and has featured regularly under new Bhoys boss Ange Postecoglou this season. Indeed, the 20-year-old has made an impressive start to life in Glasgow and notched four goals in just six games.
He told sport5.co.il: “My dream was and remains to play in England, in one of the teams in the Premier League.
“The biggest dream is Liverpool, but I have to keep working hard at Celtic to prove myself and take it step by step. Should Mo Salah worry? From me? No! He is a super player.”