|Image from Metro|
What makes Manchester United stand-out from most clubs in the world of football? What makes them so unique from every other team in England?
The answer is simple:
The tradition of developing their own, from their youth academy.
Names such as Paul Pogba, Darren Fletcher, Jesse Lingard, Ryan Giggs, Marcus Rashford, Nicky Butt, Chong, Angel Gomes, David Beckham and so on. And now to be added to those list of Manchester United youth players who made a first-team debut, James Garner.
Who Is James Garner?
James was born in Birkenhead, England on the 13th of March in the year of 2001.Garner has been with the youth team since the Under-8 levels, and although he was on the bench for Valencia and Reading, he hadn’t made his senior debut up until 2-27-2019 at just 17 years old, he, James Garner, made his senior debut for Manchester United.
James Garner has already been compared to the beloved Micheal Caririck by Ole Solskjaer, who Garner admits, he’s a big fan of. Much like Carrick, Garner is known for his calm composer, passing and work-rate. He plays as a central defending midfielder but can also play as a defender.
I personally really enjoy watching the youngster in the youth on MUTV, he’s a joy to watch and can have a shot at goal from distance, James Garner is probably my favourite youth player to watch if I’m being honest.
Garner won the 17-18 Northern Section Premier League in which he captained many times throughout the campaign. And who I believe is the current captain of England in the Under-17s. He also captained the side to the semi-finals.
When Garner had a full year with the Under-18s, he made 24 appearances in all competitions, netting three goals and contributed so much for the team and was shortlisted for the Jimmy Murphy Young Player of the Year Award.
What followed was James signing his first pro contract with Man United after his impressive performances with the youth and was he was then brought on tour with the pre-season squad in America (who unfortunately didn’t make their way to Texas that year) not long after. James Garner came into the senior squad due to an injury crisis Manchester United are currently in.
At 17, James is heavily compared to one of the greatest midfielders in Manchester United history, Michael Carrick. I desperately hope he can fulfil the expectations on him in the coming years at such a young age, because he certainly has the talent and knowledge to do so.
James Garner was the 230th academy player to make a debut for the first-team squad for Manchester United and a moment he will cherish forever. Even though James came on during the late stages of the Crystal Palace 3-1 victory at Shelhurst Park, I really hope we will get so see more of James Garner in the coming weeks and get more minutes to see what he can bring to the table and to allow him to gain more experience to also bring the the youth team.
But the real question is, what were you doing at the age of 17?