What has happened to Demetri Mitchell at Manchester United?

Demetri Mitchell only ever made one appearance for Manchester United. But there was an element of excitement around the versatile Englishman when he debuted at the end of the 2016/17 season. Then-manager Jose Mourinho handed starts to Mitchell, Joel Pereira, Josh Harrop and a certain Scott McTominay.

Harrop scored in a 2-0 win against Crystal Palace. He left that summer. Mitchell, though, stayed at United and played at left-back, left-wing and up front for the under-23s in a turbulent season.

Demetri Mitchell was once United’s best reserve team player

Mitchell was given a loan move to Heart of Midlothian in the Scottish Premiership. He scored a couple of headline-grabbing goals and put in a few good performances in an otherwise average time at Hearts. He did, though, seal a second spell at the Edinburgh club after penning a new contract at United. Mitchell had just been named Denzil Haroun Reserve Team Player of the Year.

Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images

Injury ended that second move to Hearts and Mitchell returned to United. In September 2019, he was back on the training pitch and speaking positively about hitting personal bests in the gym. But since then, nothing’s been heard about Mitchell.

Mitchell returned to training in December 2019

More injuries fell his way and he came back to training at the very end of December 2019. Three months later, his future is very much unknown. It’s likely he’s got another knock.

What does the future hold?

With no appearances in the under-23s for United this season, Mitchell needs game time. At 23, the next move in his career is absolutely vital in shaping his life in football.

Many of his former-teammates have taken a step down after leaving United. Matty Willock, who headed out on loan at a similar time to Mitchell, signed a two-year deal at Gillingham last summer. Josh Harrop went to Preston North End immediately after scoring on his debut for United.

Photo by Kieran Galvin/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Mitchell will need to do the same. If he can get a game before the end of the season, that will set up in the right way for the summer and the 2020/21 campaign. But no player benefits from having a season wiped off their CV and for Mitchell, the 19/20 season simply reads ‘N/A’.

Whether the Englishman will return soon is still unknown but United are unlikely to trigger the one-year extension clause they have in Mitchell’s contract and will almost certainly let him go at the end of June.

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Life-long Manchester United fan with a strong interest in the club's academy. Host of the Manchester United Weekly Podcast and United Through Time. First game at Old Trafford was the 7-1 rout of AS Roma in 2007.