Three Manchester United academy breakthrough stars have been singled out for praise by manager Erik ten Hag in a recent press conference.
Speaking before the Manchester derby, Ten Hag was asked whether he wanted to make new signings in the January transfer window.
And whilst confirming that he did, he also took the time to praise the three youngsters and stressed that he would be giving them plenty of opportunities in the remaining section of the season.
“From the numbers here, from the signing of Wout, but also the development of some of the young players, I think Alejandro Garnacho is the best example, but also in the week we have seen Kobbie Mainoo, we have seen Facundo Pellistri,” he said.
“I think we also have some good talentful young players in the back also, who can fight for the minutes.
“They have to deserve it in the training.
“And when they are ready to compete and get the deserve in the training, I’m not hesitating to play them.
“But they have to show it, that they can contribute to this team and that they can contribute to the high targets we have.”
The mention of Pellistri in particular, and his non-mentioning of Anthony Elanga may be a hint that the Uruguayan did enough in his 10-minute cameo against Charlton to overtake the Swede in the pecking order.
Everton have been reported to be keen to take Elanga on loan and with Amad Diallo unlikely to be recalled from his Sunderland loan, Pellistri’s chance could finally be here after a two and a half year wait since his signing from Peñarol.
Mainoo’s debut was less spectacular on Tuesday but it was certainly competent and unless a backup for Bruno Fernandes is bought or loaned this month, the 17 year old could have done enough to earn himself the role as the Portuguese star’s understudy.
Donny van de Beek is out for the season after having undergone knee surgery.
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