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Giggs: You have to give young players a chance

In what was probably Ryan Giggs’ last game at Old Trafford as interim manager and player, he made the decision to start 18-year-old James Wilson and 20-year-old Tom Lawrence.

“He’s a goalscorer – a natural goalscorer; but he’s got more to his game than just that,” said Giggs. “He can turn and run and he’s a very clever player. I was delighted for him that he got two goals and I think he wanted to stay on for his hat-trick when I took him off.”

Giggs, who also gave a debut to Tom Lawrence, added: “I wanted to freshen things up after Saturday’s defeat to Sunderland and if you give young players a chance, they will take it. They didn’t disappoint and I was proud to see that.”

Robin van Persie was also impressed with Wilson’s debut.

“James played really well,” he told MUTV. “I know how hard it is to make your [United] debut – I made mine when I was about 29! I know how special it can be. He made it very special for himself and for everyone tonight. To score two goals is really special.”

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. WilliamAR says:

    I’ve watched Wilson play on MUTV quite a few times now and read countless comments praising the lad by saying he should be in the first team already and so on and so fourth, but I am usually quite sceptical unless a young player really sticks out like a sore thumb over the rest showing that they are the required quality to make it to the first team. I have to hand it to him that he is a very talented young lad and it poses a problem of how do we shake up our strikers to accommodate him in the team? I’d be interested in hearing peoples opinions on that.

  2. Jorge Curioso II says:

    Cheech has to be off. He’s looked poor, and his style doesn’t seem to fit Van Gaal’s total voetbal. Move Welbeck to second striker or left (inside) wing. Finish what SAF had begun and sell Rooney.

    Problem solved.

  3. Tommy says:


    I am a regualr at the 21s and attend many 18s games during the course of a season and I can catagorically tell you that Wilson is the best finisher ive ever seen come through the ranks. I am like you that I never go overboard on young players as very few make it to the first team squad on a regular basis but if this lad dosent then I will eat my hat

  4. Fletch™ says:

    Absolutely buzzin all day because of yesterdays home closer.

    Januzaj dominated play.
    Wilson and Lawrence getting starts. Future is bright.

    Agree with Tommy, you don’t get carried away with youngsters. Tom may well have had his only game as a senior, but well deserved.

    As to Wilson, you just hope he stays fit and keeps his head down.
    If they keep lads like Scholes associated with the U21′s you know the youngsters will see where their future lies.

    James is a top youngster, been with the club since he was 9 if memory serves. Been punching above his weight and age since he was scoring goals for the U15′s.
    Got alot of time for the lad, hope he pushes on.

  5. Tommy says:


    Exactly mate, people think im being negative when I say that its very rare that young players progress only the very few go onto to become regulars, Im with you Tom in my opinion has not quite got the required talent to become a regular but he must be doing something right because I heard last week he was getting a new contract and was involved in first team training, I love watching the young lads but its better to be realistic, class of 92 a one off, wont get a whole collection coming through to first team at same time again, I agree about Scholesy they cant have a better mentor than that man

  6. Caleb Kay says:

    Very excited for Wilson. His finishing is right up there, and you could see he really grabbed at his first team chance with both hands and his feet.


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