You have to commend the way Luke Shaw has responded over the past month to seeing his place come under threat from new signing Alex Telles.
Shaw’s performances against Crystal Palace and Tottenham were dire, and it looked to be a relief that United were making a new signing.
Alex Telles is yet to get started yet, playing just 66 minutes of football against Paris Saint-Germain before testing positive for Covid.
Shaw has made the most of an extended run in the team. His cross for Bruno Fernandes’ header against Everton was his second assist in as many games.
The 25-year-old has now doubled his assist tally from last season, and has coupled his recent attacking production with assured defensive displays.
So it was galling for Shaw to succumb to another injury in the second half at Goodison Park.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer told United’s official website Shaw appears to have sustained a hamstring injury.
Sadly for Shaw, his battle with fitness is the one fight he just can’t seem to win or get right.
Last season he had two injury lay-offs which saw him start only 20 of 38 Premier League games.
Shaw also missed both the FA Cup semi-final and Europa League semi-final after sustaining an ankle injury late into the season.
He’ll be back
Shaw has been through worse injuries in his United career. However, it should be noted that a hamstring problem cost him several weeks worth of action last season.
Alex Telles was always going to get a run in the team and Shaw’s injury opens it up for the new signing.
Even if this latest problem turns out to be minor, it is a reminder of one of the reasons why United signed Telles in the first place, because Shaw cannot stay fit over the course of the season.
This is not just Shaw’s fault. It is a result too of the ridiculous fixture scheduling manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer rightly complained about after the game.
As usual though, the bad luck hits Shaw just when he is getting together a run of form.
Shaw has shown fighting spirit throughout his career and will continue to do so. The battle with Alex Telles on United’s left is not a challenge he will shrink or shy away from.
His real battle is staying healthy over the course of the season. The international break at least minimises the initial impact of his lay-off. Hopefully there will be a positive update on his fitness soon enough.
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