Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has criticized England for selecting Mason Greenwood, insisting that the Manchester United striker should have taken a break this summer.
Greenwood, who will turn 19 in October, was sent home from England with Manchester City midfielder Phil Foden for violating coronavirus protocol after the pair met two women in Iceland outside of the team’s bio -secure environment.
England manager Gareth Southgate described the two as “naive” before they both personally apologized for the incident.
Solskjaer has explained that Manchester United had asked Greenwood, who scored 17 goals in 49 games in last season’s breakthrough campaign for United, to be left out from the national team so he can rest over the summer break which was already shortened by the Coronavirus pandemic.
Ahead of United’s season opener against Crystal Palace, Solskjaer said: “This kid had a fantastic season. He’s just come through. I’ve worked and the club have worked and all the staff here, we worked really hard, when we gave Mason enough time on the pitch, when we gave him exposure in the media.
“Then you come to the end of the season and we’ve had less than two weeks off, and he’s called up to the national team.
“I have to be honest enough to say that I tried my best to give him a rest over the summer. The club asked specifically. We pointed out that he should have had a rest. He needs it mentally and physically after that season he had.
“First thing that happens is, one he’s called up, two he’s right there in the press. We’ve done whatever we can to protect him and I will keep on helping him. I know that when he comes back into the daily routine of the club and what we do to him, he’ll be fine.”
The manager confirmed that Mason Greenwood would be available for selection as United face Crystal Palace on Saturday in their firs Premier League game of the season.