Manchester United are renowned for their history of providing youngsters with opportunities and a platform to showcase their skills, often on the biggest stage in front of 75,000 fans at the Theatre of Dreams.
Since Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure in 2013, it’s been harder for United to bring through players in the ideal capacity of a winning side but nonetheless Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford, among others have rose through the ranks and become first team players.
Many questioned Jose Mourinho’s appointment given his tendency to trust more experienced and proven players. But isn’t he doing a better job of blooding the young players than his predecessor Louis van Gaal?
Angel Gomes, whom recently signed his professional contract with the club was given his first team debut by Mourinho, as a substitute replacing Wayne Rooney in a 2-0 win over Crystal Palace.
A game that another talent was fortunate to take advantage of, Josh Harrop scored the opener and opted to leave the club for Preston North End, citing the need for first team football as his reason for not extending his Old Trafford stay.
In making that appearance, Gomes, cousin of former Manchester United winger Nani, became the youngest player (16 years and 263 days old) to represent Manchester United since Duncan Edwards in 1953 and the first player born in the 2000s to appear in the Premier League.
Scott McTominay, 20, is also an English-born talent that the Portuguese boss Jose Mourinho has afforded opportunities and seems to trust as a real option.
With Manchester United focusing less on the Premier League and more on the Europa League last season, Mourinho was more open to fielding more fringe and young players and did. I don’t think Mourinho has given up on the league yet, as it’s clear United must keep going and hopefully a hold on to second place and at the very least stay in the top four.
Jose has regularly allowed players from the u23 squad to join in with first team training and for example, Axel Tuanzebe and Scott McTominay tend to travel up and down the country and across Europe with the squad, even when they aren’t set to feature. Several players have spoken out about the help and encouragement that offers them.
On Thursday, many United youngsters were pictured in first team training and with the number of injuries, could Mourinho be considering offering a chance or two to some of them? Callum Gribbin, was apparently with the first team more than the others. Watch this space!
It would be nice to see Jose Mourinho give a couple more youngsters an opening in low risk situations.
Written by Jordan Hackett
Follow Jordan on Twitter @Devildart180
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