The word around Old Trafford is that if you are good enough, you are old enough, and Manchester United have continued that legacy this season as well. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has confirmed that the Red Devils have promoted two talented teenagers to the first-team squad.
Manchester United are preparing for their trip to the Hawthorns on Sunday to face West Bromwich Albion and teenage sensations Shola Shoretire and Hannibal Mejbri have trained with the first team ahead of the tie.
Both youngsters have performed admirably for the youth sides. While Shoretire was rewarded with his first professional contract with Manchester United last week, Mejbri has enticed fans with his trickery and skills for a while now.
Solskjaer, who has reinstalled Manchester United’s fabled faith in youth, has certainly seen enough to call them up to the senior team.
Speaking at the pre-match press conference, the Norwegian confirmed that both players would be involved with the first-team for a while. The Manchester United manager also pointed out that it was the next step in their development.
“We’ve moved Shola up with us, Hannibal will join us and we’ll keep them with us for a while. It’s the next step in their development, we’ve got to take the hit that when they play for the reserves, they have to travel by themselves. It’s a nice step for them, they’ve done really well,” said Solskjaer.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has already overseen the promotion of Mason Greenwood from the youth side to the first team last season. The English teenager finished the campaign with 17 goals in all competitions, and even though he has been a little slow off the blocks this year, Greenwood has come into his own of late.
The Manchester United manager will be hoping that Shoretire and Mejbri can emulate Greenwood and contribute to the team. The Red Devils need the full extent of their squad to weather the congest fixture list till the end of the season. The Red Devils are currently five points behind league leaders Manchester City, who even have a game in hand.
While neither of the two teenagers are expected to play a pivotal role for the first team on the pitch right away, the experience will go a long way in helping them adapt to the senior level of the game.