Mabaya earns England Under-18 call up

Isaac Mabaya of Liverpool FC U19 during the UEFA Youth League quarterfinal football match against Juventus FC U19. Photo by Nicolò Campo via Getty Images

Zimbabwean teen starlet Isaac Mabaya has been rewarded for his rapid rise at English Premier League side Liverpool by earning call-up to the England Under-18 team.

The 17-year-old rising star will join up with the Young Lions, who travel to Marbella, Spain to play Sweden and Denmark.

The Ryan Garry-coached England Under-18 side will come up against Sweden at the Marbella Football Center on March 25 before facing the Danes at the same venue three days later.

The squad will meet up in Hertfordshire on Tuesday before travelling to their base in southern Spain.

Zimbabwean youth star Mabaya will be making his first appearance for England at Under-18 level although he has previously represented his country of birth at Under-15 and Under-16 age groups.

Although Mabaya has featured for England’s youth teams, he is still eligible to switch allegiance to Zimbabwe in the future, should he decide to represent the Southern African national at senior international level.

Born in Preston to Zimbabwean parents, Mabaya joined Liverpool’s youth ranks as a six-year-old, and due to injury problems his progress to the fringes of the first team is still in its infancy.

But having stepped up from the U16s to the U18s last season, the 17-year-old has been making his mark under Bridge-Wilkinson this time around.

Though he is a natural midfielder, Mabaya has been used as a right-back on a number of occasions this season, and his ability to drive past players with pace and power has made him a standout.

Mabaya signed his first professional contract with the club in September, and is tipped for big things in the years ahead. He made the first big step towards making his senior Liverpool debut after being named in the matchday squad in January for the FA Cup third round tie against Shrewsbury.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here