For a brief while, it seemed Cameron Borthwick-Jackson would break through at Manchester United. It was during Louis van Gaal’s tenure that he – and a number of other young prospects – were handed a chance.
By the end of that campaign, the defender had racked 14 first-team appearances and won United’s reserve team Player of the Year.
So where did it all go wrong?
The simple answer is Van Gaal’s exit. Had the Dutchman remained, Borthwick-Jackson may have become a United regular. After all, he played in the Premier League, the FA Cup and even the Champions League in his one blissful campaign with the first-team.
Injuries to others played a part, but the left-back seized his chance. Then Jose Mourinho rocked up and Borthwick-Jackson never played for United again.
Instead came of string of loan spells, with varying levels of success.
United would have been hoping the defender excelled elsewhere and stacked an even stronger claim at Old Trafford. But four temporary spells were not enough to convince Mourinho or Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Last summer, aged 23, Borthwick-Jackson left United permanently. So how has he fared at his new club Oldham Athletic.
After a fine loan spell at Boundary Park last season, the former United prospect has racked up another 26 appearances this time round.
He will be delighted to be playing regularly. And this campaign looks to be his most successful since his teens.
While his new side are unlikely to challenge the promotion spots for now, Borthwick-Jackson finally has a permanent home where he can play week in, week out.
A fresh start for a fine young talent
He has featured 22 times in the league and four times in the domestic cups. He recently missed three games due to injury but he had another runout in a 3-1 victory against Carlisle.
Knows for his versatility at United, Borthwick-Jackson has featured at left-back, left wing and centre-back already this season.
He has only managed one assist to date but that came in a key 2-1 win.
Given that he is still some way from his peak, and with his history at United, it will be interesting to see if he can force his way back up the footballing ladder in the coming years.