Shola Shoretire was the fortunate recipient of three well executed passes from Amad Diallo on Friday night as the pair combined to defeat Blackburn for United’s under-23s.
Shoretire bagged a hat-trick, with Diallo grabbing three assists, and a goal himself in a 6-4 win.
The timing of the performance was perfect. Shoretire had turned 17 just days earlier. The Mail reported he has agreed a professional contract with United, rejecting advances from Bayern Munich, Juventus and Barcelona, which was subsequently announced by United today.
Shoretire became the youngest player in England to score a hat-trick at under-23 level this season.
This record had been set a week previously by United teammate Joe Hugill, who struck four goals against Liverpool.
Two other 17-year-olds have bagged hat-tricks for their club’s under-23 sides, City’s Liam Delap and Villa’s Louie Barry. Both are older than Shoretire, who until last week had been playing as a 16-year-old in an under-23 league.
It says a lot about the standard of opposition that Blackburn had 30-year-old Northern Ireland international Corry Evans in their starting XI as an overage player. United whizkid Shoretire was the difference maker instead of the veteran.
Shoretire had Diallo to thank for his goals, but he took them so well. One was a header, and the other two were first time strikes with his right foot after Diallo had cut it back.
The header was the second Shoretire had scored this season. The other one was assisted by Facundo Pellistri against Tottenham. It’s impressive to see him do so as he is routinely the smallest player on the pitch.
Shoretire’s performance was praised by ex-United trainee Paul McShane, working as an analyst for MUTV.
McShane said: “He deserved it [the hat-trick], he worked really hard. His timing, arriving into the box was perfect.
“He’s taken his goals really well, showed great maturity, his decision making was fantastic.”
Shoretire has three assists himself at under-23 level this season and five goals in total. When the season began he looked like he could be a little out of his depth at this level, and he has quickly changed that. Now he is not just influencing games, but taking them over.
It’s understandable why there has been such interest in him and why United are pushing him early; Shoretire is clearly a special talent.
He is rising to the challenge and The Mail‘s suggestion he could make a first team appearance this season does not look completely impossible, such is his meteoric rise. His early partnership with Diallo could be significant for the future.
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