When the FA Cup draw was made last month and Manchester United landed a home tie against Watford, the match stood out as a possible match for Facundo Pellistri to get his debut.
Pellistri has a good chance of featuring in some capacity this weekend.
His form for the under-23s since joining from Penarol has been impressive. In total he has scored three goals and provided one assist from seven games.
It is a decent return for a young player who it was felt may need more time to adjust to English football.
He should be ready
Pellistri has been training with the first team squad since he signed for United, and on a couple of occasions he has been an unused substitute in the Champions League.
Now 19, Pellistri will be hoping to get his 2021 off to a strong start by making his first team debut.
United do not have many options on the wing. This has been a problem for a while now, and Pellistri was signed with a view to helping to solve it in the future.
He can give the team a big boost if he is able to show he is ready now to provide a solution.
A good performance in this game could open up more opportunities later in the FA Cup, in the Europa League, and even push him forward as a Premier League option.
Pellistri is a strong dribbler who has shown he can make good in-game decisions, knowing when to pass, and has an ability to drift inside centrally to join the attack.
He is still a young prospect, who might find he is not ready for first team football yet, but there is only one way to find out. The high reward of him succeeding makes him worth the gamble.
Most likely from the bench
If you are expecting to see Pellistri in from the start, then you may be disappointed.
Solskjaer has been cautious with his young players, even only utilising Teden Mengi as a late substitute in a dead rubber against LASK in August.
Mengi is another who could be involved against Watford after joining first team training this week, but like Pellistri, will probably feature from the bench.
If United’s starters can begin the game well and give United a healthy lead with half an hour to spare, then it could be the ideal scenario to give Pellistri the opportunity to shine at Old Trafford.
The prospect of Pellistri making his first team debut is something supporters are looking forward to…
- 4-3-3: Predicted Manchester United XI v West Ham, Greenwood at 9
- Rangnick says he is happy with Manchester United star but calls on him to improve defensively
- Manchester United talent scores twice on under-23 return after loan recall
- Rangnick says Cristiano Ronaldo has a new injury and issues fitness latest on Scott McTominay
- Ralf Rangnick confirms two Manchester United starters vs West Ham
- Dwight Yorke says Manchester United youngster 'has a really good chance of making it'
- 'Great surprise' as Manchester United loanee Pellistri lands Uruguay call-up
- Report explains why Manchester United are out of the race to sign 22 goal target
- Dalot says he is loving playing alongside two 'high-quality' Manchester United players
- 3 Manchester United talents who could follow Elanga into first team this season
- Manchester United star overtakes Cristiano Ronaldo for goal contributions in 2021/22