Stam urges Man Utd board to back Ten Hag as rebuild begins
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Manchester United have four starlets who are continuing their first-team integration ahead of Erik ten Hag’s arrival. The Red Devils have endured a dismal season but are set to welcome Ten Hag as their new manager this summer.
Ten Hag will be keen to cast an eye over the United talent as soon as he arrives at Old Trafford to get a feel for which players will be able to do the business for him on the pitch. And academy stars Hannibal Mejbri, Shola Shoretire, Alejandro Garnacho and Alvaro Fernandez could get their chance to shine.
The youngsters have all been pictured training with the first-team and will be desperate to show Ten Hag what they can do. Attacking midfielder Mejbri made his United debut when he came off the bench in a 2-1 Premier League victory over Wolves at the end of last season and the 19-year-old was handed his second first-team appearance last month when his side were thrashed 4-0 by Liverpool.
Winger Shoretire, 18, has four first-team appearances under his belt, with his most lengthy spell on the pitch coming as a second-half substitute in United’s 1-1 Champions League draw with Young Boys in December. And his fellow winger Garnacho, who is just 17, pulled on the Red Devils shirt for the first time a week ago as he came off the bench during his side’s 1-1 top-flight draw with Chelsea.
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Left-back Fernandez, meanwhile, is yet to start for the 13-time Premier League champions – but the 19-year-old has been named on the bench for their last two matches. And all four players are reportedly pushing for a start on Saturday when their team travel to Brighton for their penultimate game of the campaign.
United dominated English football for two decades under Sir Alex Ferguson and famously built their success on their Class of 92 academy graduates, with the likes of David Beckham, Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes proving to be world-beaters after being handed the opportunity to shine.
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And Ten Hag would surely give anything to have a crop of youngsters who could emulate the success of those players. The Red Devils have suffered a precipitous downturn in fortunes since Ferguson retired in 2013 and have endured another dismal campaign as their experienced blockbuster stars have come up short time and time again.
Ten Hag has a huge job on his hands if he is to turn the club’s fortunes around – and he may just be willing to give the youngsters a go if they impress him during pre-season, having brought through several teenage talents during his time with Ajax.
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