A report in the MEN this week claimed Manchester United are open to sending Facundo Pellistri out on loan.
Pellistri signed for United in October and has played seven games for the under-23s.
He has been on the bench for the first team a couple of times in the Champions League but in each case he was an unused substitute.
Now it seems like he has already been overtaken in the first team pecking order by Amad Diallo.
Reasons against a loan
Sending Pellistri on loan may deny him a glimmer of opportunity this season. There may be a chance in a later FA Cup round if United beat Liverpool and land a soft draw, or the Europa League.
There is also a case to let him continue for the under-23s, where he has three goals and one assist in his seven appearances so far.
Pellistri has just moved across the world to join United and settle in Manchester. Sending him somewhere else on loan, possibly another country, will mean more upheaval and could prove disruptive for him.
United’s loanees this season have had very mixed success, more bad than good. There is no guarantee Pellistri, at just 19, will fare well away from Old Trafford.
Why a loan may just work
The case for a loan should acknowledge all of the negatives above, but conclude it is worth the risk.
Pellistri is a little way off the first team. A few more under-23 performances between now and May is unlikely to change much for him ahead of next season.
What Pellistri really needs is first team football and not under-23 football. He already has experience of this in Uruguay.
If United are not going to offer it, then it makes sense to find him a club which can. Whether that be in the Championship, or in Belgium, Holland, Portugal, or somewhere obscure like Spain’s second division.
Strong performances out on loan are more likely to grab United’s attention than doing so at under-23 level.
If he can score and assist regularly out on loan and earn praise by playing well, then Pellistri will fast-track his chances at United for next season.
Pellistri was not signed with an eye on this season. 2021/22 is the year he will be expected to start making a first team impact.
A loan, for better or worse, will prepare him to kick on at United next season. He will return for pre-season with either a spring in his step, or hardened by the experience and better prepared.
The worst case is he just gets sent out on loan again next season. At just 19, there is no rush. Pellistri is under contract until 2026. The best case scenario is that a successful loan helps fast-track him into Solskjaer’s plans for next season.
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