When Luke Shaw signed for Manchester United in the summer of 2014, his arrival at Old Trafford caused a stir so much for his £32 million price tag, as it was for his age.
Despite the media melee, the then 18-year old took well to his new surroundings, holding the promise of being one of the most electrifying youngsters in the English game.
Injuries from the start
Even so, his debut season was marred with injury, forcing him to register a mere 20 appearances in all competitions.
His second season however took a turn for the worst, as a horrific leg break against PSV Eindhoven in the Champions League had him sidelined for a vast majority of the 2015/16 season.
After making his long awaited return from injury, Luke Shaw started the first five Premier League games of the season under the stewardship of Jose Mourinho, but the 21-year old has found it hard to break even for Manchester United: by and large due to fitness concerns.
Not just a concern for Mourinho
But is Mourinho being a tad bit harsh to the youngster given his lengthy injury lay off last season? Certainly not!
Concerns over Luke Shaw’s fitness were first addressed by Louis van Gaal, amplified by Roy Hodgson and most recently dramatized by Jose Mourinho.
The Manchester United manager raised concerns over Shaw’s fitness at the start of the season, but Mourinho has now become incredibly frustrated about his focus and commitment, one that may quite rightly force the fullback out of Old Trafford in the summer.
Although his public vilification of Luke Shaw- and not for the first time- was uncalled for, Mourinho’s frustration has been compounded by the absence of key players like Ander Herrera and Paul Pogba, and the ineptitude of the attacking line in the absence of Zlatan Ibrahimovic- more so against West Brom.
The suspended Herrera and Ibrahimovic are poised to make a return to the starting line-up as United host Everton in a midweek Premier League fixture, while the quartet of Jesse Lingard, Marcus Rashford, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Anthony Martial look to win over the manager after an abysmal, inconsistent showing against the Baggies.
Written by Brian Humphrey
Follow Brian on Twitter @brihum
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