Manchester United players are urging Ole Gunnar Solskjaer not to dip into the transfer market late on this summer as they’re eager to see Mason Greenwood get a regular first-team role in the season ahead.
The 17-year-old has shone for the Red Devils in pre-season so far, looking the real deal with goals in friendly victories over Leeds and Inter Milan.
And CaughtOffside has been told by a source close to the squad that many key members of the Man Utd first-team have now spoken to Solskjaer about promoting him to the first-team in 2019/20.
United have been linked with big-name forwards like Juventus’ Paulo Dybala and Lille attacker Nicolas Pepe, but the clear message from his squad is that Solskjaer should focus on developing Greenwood into a regular instead.
The MUFC wonderkid certainly seems to be one of the most exciting prospects coming through at the club in recent times, and Solskjaer himself has publicly hinted he probably won’t be going out on loan any time soon, suggesting he is ready to play regularly this season.
“He has a chance to start against Chelsea. I won’t say it is not a possibility. It is a good possibility if he keeps going as he does,” the Norwegian said recently.
He added: “Mason’s never been on my mind to send out on loan. He’s one that we have to keep at our place, keep him playing when we feel it’s good for him and at the moment he’s flying.
“He reminds me a little bit of the Giggsy story – you can’t really send him on loan and for me he’s ready to be in this squad.”
There definitely seems to be potential for a role for the England youth international, with players like Alexis Sanchez, Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial not really doing enough last season.
Luke Shaw has been another to publicly praise Greenwood, in what could now be taken as a potential warning to bigger names at the club, as well as a hint to Solskjaer not to be tempted to spend big on Dybala or Pepe instead.
“He’s got so much talent, it’s unbelievable,” Shaw said of Greenwood. “He’s both-footed, but that’s unbelievable for that age. He’s got the maturity level that’s so much above his age, but he’s confident and not cocky.
“Mason has been exceptional and he needs to just carry that on, he needs to work hard and keep his feet firmly on the ground. I’ve got no doubts he could be an important player for us come the end of the season.”
It’s not easy to promote youth in the demanding modern game, but United have a proud history of doing so and have handed opportunities to other promising talents like Tahith Chong and James Garner over pre-season so far.
Greenwood clearly seems the stand-out wonderkid among an impressive pool of talent, and it looks like the feeling now is that he’s genuinely being backed to make an impact in the big games for United this season.