Manchester United’s under-23 campaign has been a mixed one as the team adjust to increased competition after winning promotion last season.
After showing promise with four wins in six games, United’s final match of 2020 ended in disaster as the team were thrashed 6-1 by PL2 leaders Chelsea.
It was a lesson learned for a young group of players who can still improve and earn a respectable finish this season.
Young defender Teden Mengi played in the loss, and he appeared to be irritated by a social media post from teammate Hannibal Mejbri.
Mejbri posted a message with his friend, Chelsea youngster Pierre Ekwah, taken before the game.
Mengi admonished him with a reply saying: “The reason why we lost, too many friends, not enough enemies.”
Hannibal’s reply took the message in good spirits, saying to Mengi he appreciated the advice.
This is a moment for Mejbri to learn from as he continues to build on an impressive individual season in which he has three goals and five assists.
Advice Harry Maguire could use too?
Mengi’s comments are especially interesting because they could be applied to club captain Harry Maguire too.
Maguire was criticised after the Manchester derby at Old Trafford when he was seen sharing a hug with opponent John Stones at the final whistle, while coach Michael Carrick was seen embracing Pep Guardiola.
Former Red Devils captain Roy Keane told Sky Sports’ post-game coverage: “At the end of the game the staff were smiling and hugging, players chatting. Just get down the tunnel. I don’t get it.
“Everyone wants to be pals and popular. You’re playing for Man United and your job is to win football matches, not be mates with everybody.”
Mengi’s comments show a winning mentality, and while he will be busy assessing his own performance in the defeat, it is good to see him trying to set a standard and encourage his teammates to put the badge first.
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