Sheffield United: Blades star hopes to roar with Young Lions

Sheffield United goalkeeper George Long
Sheffield United goalkeeper George Long
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Sheffield United goalkeeper George Long is targeting a place in England’s starting eleven after being named in Peter Taylor’s squad for the FIFA under-20 World Cup, writes James Shield.

The Young Lions, who travelled to Turkey earlier this month, begin their Group E campaign against Iraq before locking horns with Chile and Egypt.

Long said: “I’m honoured to represent my country and now I’m determined to try and force myself into the team.

“I’ll be doing everything I can to try and get some minutes under my belt.”

The Star understands that United, who yesterday appointed Adam Owen to manager David Weir’s backroom staff, are on course to be granted Category Two status when the results of the Elite Player Performance Plan audits are announced next month.

United’s Redtooth Academy, where the likes of Long, Joe Ironside, Callum McFadzean and Elliott Whitehouse all learned their trade, is at the heart of Weir’s plans for next season.

Bramall Lane’s hierarchy applied for Category Two status when Football League clubs voted to adopt EPPP two seasons ago.

*Twitter: @JamesShield1