Manchester United’s young players are increasingly becoming the focus of attention. Which United’s youngsters excite you? Can they emulate Paul Scholes, David Beckham or Ryan Giggs? I’ve not included Johnny Evans and Rafael as they have regularly featured in first team/squad.
Cleverley (age 20) is a midfielder that can play in a central role or on the left. Has spent the previous season on loan at Watford, where he made 35 appearances scoring 11 goals. Is Cleverley the goal scoring midfielder we are crying out for? Cleverley has been rumoured with a loan move to Newcastle for forthcoming season.
Who can forget the late winner Macheda (18) scored against Aston Villa? Not me, I still feel twinges in my back after lifting a mate over my shoulders in celebration (worth it though). Personally, I have high hopes for Macheda, he’s strong, quick and can finish. Macheda is by no means not the finished article, there are areas of his game which require improving. However, this will come with experience as he seemingly improves on each viewing.
Acclimatisation is how I would describe Obertan’s first season at United. We’ve seen real glimpses of the Frenchman’s ability, notably the assist in Wolfsburg and the cracker scored against the Scousers in a reserve match. Obertan can play on the left, right and through the middle; a good pre-season could see Obertan feature more in first team.
The signing of Obertan raised a few question marks from his former manager at Bordeaux Laurent Blanc. Blanc’s suggestion was that Obertan must overcome physiological and mental challenges to fulfil his true potential at United. Read a more in depth blog about Obertan here: Future Prospect: Gabriel Obertan
Ritchie De Laet
De Laet (21) was awarded reserve player of the season for his efforts over the last nine months. The Belgian is capable of playing all positions in the defensive line, with right back probably his preferred position. With his ability to play several positions will De Laet become the new John O’Shea?
James (18) will spend a successive season on loan at Preston after joining the Lancashire club earlier this year. James has represented England at all age levels so is obviously highly rated. I’ve heard comparisons to Paul Scholes, this true?
The signing of Pogba caused a stir. Perhaps jumping on the bandwagon of Chelsea’s alleged tapping up of Gaël Kakuta, Le Havre (Pogba’s former club) claimed United had tapped up their young star. These claims were found to be untrue. I’ve been impressed with what I’ve seen of Pogba, Vieira-esque in style. Pogba’s highlight of season came when he scored a magical goal against the Noisy Neighbours. Is Vieira-esque a fair comment?
Mame Biram Diouf
A fantastic potential is how Ole Gunnar Solskaer described Diouf. From what I’ve seen, it is difficult to argue with the opinion of the United legend. Diouf has followed a similar route to Solskjaer; both played for Molde in Norway, both have joined United at a similar age and both have scored on their Old Trafford debut.
I’m excited from what I’ve seen of Diouf. He has pace, strong in the air and on first impression a cool finisher, although I’ve been told otherwise from those which have seen more of Diouf. Read a more in depth blog about Diouf here: Future Prospect: Mame Biram Diouf
Very much similar to Berbatov in style in my opinion, although I guess too many won’t like the sound of this comparison. Keane is still very young so is some way of first team football. He is currently representing England in the European U17 Championship.
I’ve perhaps missed out your personal favourite. Ravel Morrison, Davide Petrucci and Joshua King for example. By all means, discuss the players not listed.
So can the current crop of youngsters dominate English football for the next decade? Which of the younger players are you excited by?