Research by the CIES Football Observatory found that United have produced more footballers in the top five European leagues than any other English club.

Looking to the clubs at Europe’s top five leagues, Barcelona, Lyon and Real Madrid are the only clubs to have produced more players.

“The Premier League came up with the statistic that we have got the most homegrown players competing in league football and that is a credit to our Academy,” explained Reserves coach Warren Joyce. “It is especially satisfying that many of these are local lads who have been with us since an early age.”

On Boxing Day United face Hull, who have five United academy youth products in their ranks – Robbie Brady, James Chester, Paul McShane, Joe Dudgeon, Cameron Stewart and Alex Bruce.