After Danny Welbeck and Tom Cleverley were sold by Louis van Gaal, there were claims that Van Gaal was selling United out, and forgetting about the ingrained priority to bring through youth players.
This was a bizarre claim, considering Van Gaal is the manager who has given debuts to the likes of Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Thomas Muller, Carles Puyol, Victor Valdes, Edgar Davids, Patrick Kluivert and Clarence Seedorf, amongst others.
“They have probably lost the way of Manchester United a little bit,” Mike Phelan said. “Now, rather than produce, it may be the case where they are buying in. Someone like a Danny Welbeck has been part of United’s identity and that has been broken. What will happen in the future now, nobody knows but that thread has been broken now.”
In the 12 months of playing time Manchester United have seen under Van Gaal, eight players from our academy have made their debuts for the club.
Jesse Lingard, Tyler Blackett, Reece James, Saidy Janko, Andreas Pereira, Paddy McNair, Tom Thorpe and, on Saturday against West Brom, Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, are the academy players Van Gaal has given a chance in the first team to, while 17-year-old Axel Tuanzebe was named on the bench for our Premier League game against Crystal Palace.
Lingard scored his first goal for United on Saturday, while Pereira scored his first goal for the club in September.