Ethan Laird might be the unluckiest young player at Manchester United right now.
The right-back finds his first team path blocked for now by new £50 million signing Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Diogo Dalot and Ashley Young.
Laird is really good enough to displace Young already.
Injuries stopped his momentum last season and might have prevented him getting a first team call.
He was in action last night for the under-21s in the EFL Trophy game with Rotherham and looked better than ever.
Laird only just turned 18 this week and looks to have grown a bit over the summer.
He scored United’s opener with a well taken strike in the second half. Largie Ramazani netted a second from a James Garner assist.
Fitting Laird in
If Young is phased out and Diogo Dalot moves to a wing role, Laird could quickly become Wan-Bissaka’s back-up.
Alternatively if he can use this season to develop as a left-back, United could do with the competition for Luke Shaw on that side.
Laird must stay injury free, and if he can, this could be a big year.
We would not be surprised to see him train with the first team, potentially make his debut in a cup game or Europa League.
He is a shoe-in for more games in the EFL Trophy, with United entering an under-21 side for the first time this season.
It would be good to see him get on United’s pre-season tour next year. The future looks bright and fitting him in is a good problem to have.
Here is a look at how United fans reacted to Laird’s performance…
- Joel Pereira makes good first impression on Hearts debut
- What went wrong against Wolves before and how can United avoid it?
- Viv Anderson calls on Manchester United to sign James Maddison
- Worry as Ethan Laird picks up injury for United under-23s
- Manchester United fans react to James Garner’s latest under-23 display