Manchester United’s under-18 side put together a fantastic season in 2020/21. While the team missed out on the title by a single point, there were a number of standout players.
We selected seven of the best under-23 players earlier this week and narrowing down the seven best under-18 stars was a lot more difficult.
There was a high bar and that meant third highest goalscorer Alejandro Garnacho did not quite make the cut. There was also no place for Zidane Iqbal, who while brilliant when he played, missed several months with injury.
Omari Forson was another unlucky to miss out, while we did not count Joe Hugill’s performances at this level towards the list as he made the top seven of the under-23s.
Without further ado, here is a look at the pick of the bunch at under-18s level, several if not all of who could make the step up next season to the 23s.
There is only one place to start. Charlie McNeill scored 24 goals in 21 league games, netting a goal every 72 minutes on average.
The former City talent played with confidence and provided six assists in his last seven games too.
The young striker scored more league goals than any under-18s player in England.
McNeill plays with a swagger and made everybody around him better. He has a very bright future ahead of him.
Norwegian talent Isak Hansen-Aaroen plays like a future first team star. United won 15 of the 16 matches he played.
The midfielder helped United’s young side to control possession, comfortable playmaking from deep or high up the pitch.
Hansen-Aaroen told VG earlier this month he hopes to make his first team debut within a year. That sounds ambitious but it is very possible. He has the talent.
Svidersky relished the responsibility of captaining the side and split his time in roles in defensive midfield and at centre-back.
The Slovakian also managed eight under-23 appearances on top of his 20 starts for the under-18s.
United won 19 of the 20 matches he played, which speaks volumes to his importance to the team. Unfortunately his only goal came in the one match he lost.
Charlie Savage proved this season he has a contract at United on merit, not just through the name of his uncle.
He was one of United’s most consistent players for the under-18s, providing seven assists. He also chipped in with three goals.
Savage played in 23 of the 24 games, captaining the side once, and looked settled in a defensive midfield role. He showed his adaptabiliuty too by filling in at left-back late in the season.
French winger Noam Emeran’s first 18 months at United were ruined by injuries so this season was about catching up.
He showed he may be worth waiting for, with a series of eye catching performances, especially early in the season.
Emeran scored five goals and provided six assists and earned a call-up to United’s under-23 side.
Dillon Hoogewerf’s season took a little while to warm up and when he got going he was unstoppable.
The Dutchman scored 12 goals and provided 11 assists in 19 appearances.
Seven of these goals scored came in his final five games. He also made six under-23 appearances and provided an assist, and will make the step up next season.
Hoogewerf is an exciting forward who likes to drop deep and by the end of the season he and McNeill were working in sync.
This was a big season for Bjorn Hardley in defence. In his first season for the under-18s he was often used at left-back. This season he shone in a centre-back role.
Hardley played well before his season was cut short by injury, captaining the team five times.
He also played in one under-23s game where he impressed, and next season he will be challenged to perform there on a regular basis. While he has a long way to go to show he can one day be first team quality, this was an encouraging season for him to build on.
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