Gary Neville heaps praise on young English right back talent

‘He (Jamie Carragher) once said no-one wants to grow up to be a Gary Neville’: Manchester United legend heaps praise on ‘phenomenal’ young English right back talent after Reece James and Tariq Lamptey shine in Chelsea’s win over Brighton

  • Gary Neville believes England are spoiled for choice in their right back position 
  • Reece James and Tariq Lamptey impressed in Chelsea’s win against Brighton 
  • James had netted a superb strike from distance to edge Chelsea back in front 
  • Brighton’s Lamptey, signed from Chelsea, threatened with dangerous crosses 

Gary Neville has highlighted England’s welcome conundrum at right back after both Reece James and Tariq Lamptey gained plenty of plaudits on Monday evening. 

A new-look Chelsea side were able to defeat Brighton 3-1 in their first Premier League clash of the new season, with James having crashed home an unstoppable effort from distance on the south coast.

Lamptey also impressed down the same flank for the hosts, leaving Neville to jokingly insist that a jibe from fellow pundit Jamie Carragher has sparked a ‘phenomenon’ in that position.

Gary Neville has hailed England’s right back dilemma after Reece James’ stunner at Brighton

Tariq Lamptey, another young English full back, also impressed for the hosts against Chelsea

‘The performance levels and the demands that are put on the modern day full back are absolutely incredible,’ Neville said. ‘Not just to defend, but to deliver assists, to deliver goals, match-winning moments. 

‘You think of the options now that England have at full back. Reece James, Lamptey, you’ve got Kyle Walker, (Kieran) Trippier, Trent Alexander-Arnold is one of the best players in the world. 

‘He (Carragher) once said that no-one wants to grow up to be a Gary Neville! There is a lot of them, he’s started a phenomenon!’ 

Neville joked a jibe from Jamie Carragher sparked a ‘phenomenon’ for England at right back

As well as netting his thunderbolt, James also picked up an assist for Kurt Zouma’s deflected effort and proved a nuisance at both ends of the field.

He made 37 appearances in all competitions last season, underlining his first-team breakthrough under Frank Lampard, and was again preferred ahead of club captain Cesar Azpilicueta against Brighton. 

Lampard admitted that the starlet’s piledriver had him ‘off his seat’. 

He said: ‘We needed it, we weren’t at our best in that period. Reece has got that in him, he is a player of such quality. You try and get him in areas where he can be a threat.’

James enjoyed a superb breakthrough last season and capped the start of the new one in style

James’ opposite number, meanwhile, ended the last campaign in fine form and recently earned his first England U21s call-up.

The 19-year-old had caught the eye across Brighton’s last eight matches after joining from Chelsea in January.

Lamptey has previously represented his nation from U18 through to U20 level and, alongside James, will harbour ambitions of breaking into the senior set-up in the future.

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