Michael Mancienne is confident his decision to quit Chelsea for Hamburg will only make him a better player.

Mancienne, who looks certain to captain England in their European Under-21 Championship opener against Spain on Sunday, joined the German club 11 days ago, having spent almost 15 years in the system at Stamford Bridge.

"I think the move will have a great benefit," said Mancienne.

"It's a new challenge for me and to play for a big team such as Hamburg and to be playing week in, week out.

"I'm really honoured to go there and really looking forward to the challenge."

Mancienne will become only a handful of English players to have braved a move to one of Europe's top leagues in recent seasons.

He claimed it was a mystery why more of his compatriots had not followed suit.

"To be honest, I don't know," he said.

"I saw it as a massive opportunity to go abroad and to play in the German league, so I'm really excited by it.

"I did have a few other options, but I saw Hamburg as my biggest option."

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