It’s been a tough start to life at Manchester United for talented Slovakian midfielder Martin Svidersky. But the 17-year-old has just signed his first professional contract at the club who are giving a clear demonstration of their faith in him already.

Svidersky most recently played for United in a 2-1 loss against Derby but performed well. He’ll be part of United’s squad on Friday night as the Reds take on Wigan Athletic in the FA Youth Cup quarter-final.

United beat Europe’s elite to sign Martin Svidersky

United worked hard to sign Svidersky from his old Slovakian side, Tatran Presov. Chelsea and Liverpool were two other big clubs interested, but not the only ones.

Three weeks before completing his move to United, Svidersky suffered a horrendous ACL injury and was out for 12 months. He tore his ACL, MCL and meniscus, requiring significant surgery.


He made his returned in late 2019 and this back end of the 2019/20 season will be important for him. A central midfielder by trade, he’s struggled to make it into his natural position in the under-18s side.

After recovering from injury, Martin Svidersky has a hard task ahead

Charlie McCann and Mark Helm are building a good partnership and Hannibal Mejbri is floating between the under-18s and under-23s set-ups. To accommodate that, Svidersky has been shifted onto the left-wing and back into defence where he’s played at both right-back and left-back.

He’s a versatile player, and as a person, he’s got similar attributes. Svidersky speaks five languages (English, Slovakian, German, French and Greek) like many Eastern European footballers. And to cope with the injury that he suffered from is impressive.

Injury recovery will help Svidersky mentally

Many players who have graduated from United’s academy have spoken about the benefit of a harsh injury in growing yourself mentally. Svidersky will have certainly done so. To get through such a difficult time, having just joined United, is hard.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 07: Martin Svidersky and Harvey Neville of Manchester United U18s walk out ahead of the U18 Premier League match between Manchester United U18s and Stoke City U18s at Aon Training Complex on December 07, 2019 in Manchester, England.
(Photo by Manchester United/Manchester United via Getty Images)

It does come with problems, though. Even though he returned in November, there’s still a little way to go in terms of his recovery. At his age, when injury reduces time on the pitch in matches and training, muscle growth suffers.

The important task is staying injury-free until the end-of-the-season. United’s coaches will be focusing on Svidersky’s long-term potential which is undoubtedly high. In addition to Liverpool, United and Chelsea, Celtic, Man City, Inter Milan and Borussia Dortmund were reported to have looked at Svidersky.

He’s been a talent from a young age and, back in 2011, a video was uploaded to YouTube of him practising his left-footed shooting.

Svidersky is being put through the paces at United. He was originally thought of as a box-to-box midfielder with quality in both halves but opportunities have been limited.

Like Arnau Puigmal in the last two years, Svidersky is being played out of position at full-back. Puigmal has benefitted hugely from such a move and hopefully the same is true of Svidersky, a tidy player with an excellent workrate.

MALAGA, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 13: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Scott McTominay of Manchester United in action during a first team training session on February 13, 2020 in Malaga, Spain.  Martin Svidersky signs first professional contract at Manchester United after horror injury.
(Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)

For motivation, Svidersky can look no further than to United’s own Scott McTominay. The Scottish midfielder didn’t have a horror injury like Svidersky but missed the large part of two years due to growing problems.

He came out the other side, developed his technical game and is now a first-team regular.

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