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Six Things You Need To Know About Tom Thorpe And Paddy McNair: The Manchester United Youngsters Who Could Start Against West Ham Tomorrow

Just who are the academy players called up by Louis van Gaal?

With Manchester United’s defensive crisis having deepened after the Red Devils lost Jonny Evans to injury and Tyler Blackett to suspension on a disastrous afternoon at Leicester last weekend, manager Louis van Gaal has now turned to two academy players, Tom Thorpe and Paddy McNair, to potentially make their debuts for the Red Devils against West Ham United at Old Trafford tomorrow.

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With neither Thorpe nor McNair being particularly well known to most United fans, let alone the wider footballing public, we picked out six facts that we think you need to know about the youthful duo:

Thorpe was part of a struggling Birmingham City defence last season

Lee Clark Birmingham City

One look at the defensive record of Lee Clark’s Birmingham City side during Thorpe’s six games on loan at St. Andrews last season is enough to send a shiver down the spine of a United supporter. The Blues shipped 15 goals in just six games involving Thorpe as they plummeted towards the Championship drop-zone, picking up just four points in that time. Thorpe wasn’t involved in the final two games of the season after Hayden Mullins was recalled from Notts County.

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