Manchester United’s biggest weakness all season, and there have been a few, has been the midfield.
There was a hope back in the summer that United would give James Garner a chance to shine and that this would be his breakthrough season.
Unfortunately former boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer preferred to give game time to Andreas Pereira, pointlessly, leaving Garner to look for a loan move.
Garner returned to Nottingham Forest, where he spent the second half of last season, and after a poor start which saw them sack Chris Hughton, the Championship side are back on track.
Garner stars v Arsenal
Garner was selected as a starter for Forest on Sunday night in their FA Cup third round clash against Arsenal. This was a great chance to see him in action against a Premier League opponent.
The England under-21 international raised his game and stepped up against an Arsenal side featuring Martin Odegaard and summer signing Albert Lokonga.
Garner came close to breaking the deadlock from a free-kick, forcing goalkeeper Bernd Leno into a full length ssave when his effort was heading for the top corner.
The Manchester United loanee impressed with his composure, playing one excellent forward pass in the first half to switch the play.
The only downside came in the second half when he lost a challenge on the edge of the box and Eddie Nketiah nearly nipped into score.
Forest took a lead in the 82nd minute through striker Lewis Grabban to spark wild celebrations at the City Ground and secure a 1-0 upset win.
Garner had worked hard on both sides of the ball, as one of two central midfielders in Forest’s 3-4-3 formation, and helped Forest to see out the win and dump Arsenal out.
The United loanee can be proud of his contribution, and with United’s struggles in the position, manager Ralf Rangnick might even consider whether to bring him back to help out.
Here is a look at how United fans reacted to Garner’s performance…
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