The first seven Premier League games of the 2012-2013 season have resulted in 4 wins and two losses. Players like Michael Carrick, Rafael, Shinji Kagawa and Patrice Evra have been getting a lot of trust and playing time. On the bottom end of depth chart another group of players are developing their game elsewhere. Below are a few notes on the background and status of these players.
Sir Alex Ferguson on players going out on loan:
Gaining regular starting action for a youth player can be the difference between succeeding and not at the top level of any sport. Getting a taste of first-team football is vital for the learning curve of any young player. Sir Alex Ferguson has previously expressed a desire of keeping on-loan players in England as clubs continue to eye temporary deals with United’s youngsters. Although farming out younger prospects to Royal Antwerp has proved beneficial in the past, a deal with an overseas club can be a step into the unknown. For example, Federico Macheda had little luck out on loan in his native Italy, while Joshua King struggled for game time at Borussia Mönchengladbach in Germany. “Very few of our young players go abroad on loan”. “We had Macheda go to Sampdoria and he was only there a week and they sacked the coach. It ended up being a nightmare for him and he never got a game. I think its better that the ones that go on loan, go to the Barclays Premier League or the Championship. By doing that we can have regular contact and see them every week. We get them watched all the time. That’s the process by which we work under”, Sir Alex Ferguson explained.
Fabio (Queens Park Rangers)
Fabio Perreira da Silva (-90) is the twin brother of Rafael Perreira da Silva (-90). The twins signed for Manchester United in Februari 2007 and were born I Petropolis, about an hour’s drive from Rio de Janeiro in Rio de Janeiro state. They began playing football from the age of five and were spotted by a representative of Fluminense, who gave them the opportunity to play for the club and live at the club’s training center at Xerem when they were just eleven years old.
Fabio, who began his football career as a defensive midfielder, was converted to left back when he joined Fluminense. It was with during the Nike Premier Cup in Hong Kong 2005 that he was spotted by Manchester United scout Les Kershaw. The scout instantly rang the hot-line to Sir Alex Ferguson and the twins were basically offered an introductionary training period with the club. Despite signing for United the twins were unable to be registered as United players until his 18 birthday. Fabio later made his senior debut on the 4 of august 2008 when coming on at halftime for Patrice Evra. On September 2011 he was rewarded due to his good form with Manchester United, a place in the Brazil senior squad for games against Costa Rica and Mexico on October 2011. Fabio has played internationally for the Brazilian U-17 team and was captain for the side in the FIFA U-17 World Cup, where he scored twice making him the team’s joint-top scorer.
In July 2012 it was announced that Fabio would be going out on loan for the 2012-2013 season. Fabio made his debut for Mark Hughes’s QPR at home to Swansea City and has played 4 games for the Premier League club. By giving him a chance to play first team football, United are especially monitoring his physical development as he isn’t regarded as physical as his brother who has won a place in United’s starting eleven. Fabio is on the other hand seen as an energetic player and has been described as an excellent footballer by Sir Alex Ferguson. “With Evra such a consistent performer over the last five years, it doesn’t matter who would have been second choice, it would have been difficult for them and that is the situation with Fabio”, Sir Alex was quoted saying.
John Cofie (Sheffield United)
The Ghana-born attacker John Cofie (-93) began his football career as a junior player with Burnley. After interest from a number of clubs, he was signed by Manchester United in July 2009. The 19-year old signed a season long loan deal with Sheffield United after spending last season on loan with Belgian side Royal Antwerp. According to reports, Sir Alex Ferguson allowed Cofie to join Sheffield United on loan after being impressed by the club’s style of play last season and has described Cofie as a prodigious talent whom he has high hopes for.
During his loan spell with the League One side, Cofie has started 6 games (3 substitute appearances) and has so far scored two goals. The goals coming against Colchester away in a 1-1 draw and a 5-3 win at home against Bournemouth. In an interview Cofie commented that he is happy to compete for a place in the starting eleven and that if he would have been the only striker in the squad, then he wouldn’t have been as motivated as now. Cofie confirmed that having competition makes you train harder and helps you develop and is now competing for playing time with players like Shaun Miller, Richard Cresswell and Chris Porter.
The England youth international is confident that he can thrive as the Blades aim to gain promotion from League One at the second attempt. “As a striker you need to be in a team that passes the ball and creates chances and this club has excellent midfielders”, he commented. One thing that made the decision easier for him was the style of play that the coach of Sheffield United (David Wilson) prefereed”, he added.
Reece Brown (Coventry City)
Reece Brown (-91) is the younger brother of ex. Manchester United and now Sunderland player Wes Brown. Reece is currently on loan at Coventry City and has previously had loan spells at Bradford City, Doncaster Rovers and Oldham Athletic. Having joined United at the age of nine, after previously played for Fletcher Moss Rangers, Brown was awarded his first professional contract in the summer of 2009.
The central defender, who also can play full-back and in midfield, has so far started six games for the League One side, playing 90 minutes in every one of these. The central defender was touted as a very good signing for the Sky Blues, as he is considered a talented player.
Ben Amos (Hull City)
Ben Amos (-90) has so far started 9 games for the Hull City. Amos has conceded eleven goals with Hull City winning four out of nine games. Amos, who began his career with Crewe Alexandra’s youth academy, joined United at the age of eleven. He has previously spent time at Peterborough United, Molde and Oldham Athletic and is an England youth international, having represented his country at every level from U-16 to U-21.
In his first season at United, Amos became a regular starter for the club’s U-13 team. His first appearance for the U-18 team in October 2005 as starting goalkeeper Ron-Robert Zieler was sent off in a 2-0 defeat to Bolton Wanderers. He became a regular starter in the 2006-2007 season after signing a trainee contract in July 2006. Amos made his debut for the reserve team in November 2007 and impressed enough to be selected to go on the first team’s 2008 summer tour of South Africa. He made his first competitive debut for the first-team on September 2008 in a 3-1 win at home to Middlesbrough. Amos later travelled with the team for the 2008 FIFA Club World Cup, having been selected as a replacement for Ben Foster who was injured at the time. In May 2012, Amos signed a three year contract extension with Manchester United which will keep him at the club until at least 2015.
Sean McGinty (Oxford United)
The English-Irish defender born 1993 spent three years in the youth setup at Charlton Athletic before moving to Manchester United in July 2009. He progressed through the youth academy and was part of the side that won the 2010-2011 FA Youth cup. McGinty has previously been on loan at Football League Two side Morecambe appearing in only four games after dislocating his shoulder in a match against Hereford United.
McGinty originally moved on a six-month loan deal to Oxford and made his first team debut in a 3-0 defeat to Leeds United in the second round of the League-Cup. On the 13 of September his loan deal was terminated after he had featured in only two of the first eight fixtures. He later returned to Manchester United.
Luke Giverin (Royal Antwerp)
Luke Giverin (-93) is a left-back that currently is on loan at Belgian Royal Antwerp. Giverin is a Manchester United youth product who grew up nearby Old Trafford in the Salford area. According to reserve-team coach Warren Joyce, Giverin is seen as a clever footballer who has shown sharpness and tremendous attitude. Joyce explained that Giverin is a really good trainer and that his main strengths are his technical skills, his handling of the ball and toughness. He is also a keen tackler, who reads danger by sniffing out situations and thereby reacting quickly.
In an interview with MUTV, Giverin confirms that he started playing football at the age of five for local side Barr Hill in Salford. He signed for United at the age of seven and has been at the club ever since. The first player he looked up to was Rio Ferdinand and views his own strengths as technique and passing. Knowing what he wants to do with the football and a having a great attitude is also seen as important. During his loan spell he has featured in a couple of different role, amongst other as a central midfielder. He has been touted as technically brilliant, with an appetite for winning tackles and headers even though he isn’t the tallest player on the pitch.
Gyliano van Velzen (Royal Antwerp)
Gylian Van Velzen (-94) is a youth team winger born in Amsterdam (Holland). Van Velzen is currently on loan at Royal Antwerp and has featured for Holland’s U-15, U-16 and U-17 teams.
Van Velzen – who was signed from Ajax Amsterdam – is a tall, athletic and skilful winger who is blessed with great pace and who also is capable of playing up front. The youngster scored his first senior goal as Royal Antwerp against FC Brussels. He scored eight goals for the Academy last season and made three substitute appearances for the reserves.
Graduating from the junior ranks at Manchester United
As a part of the development of youth team players at Manchester United, the League Cup has for a long time been regarded as an important competition. There have already been a lot of players using similar competitions or injuries to regular starters as a springboard for launching their football careers.
Already this season, players like Scott Wootton, Michael Keane, Marnick Vermijl and Ryan Tunicliffe have been handed their debuts for the first team. One could regard the debuts of Wootton, Keane and Vermijl in the League Cup game in the 2-1 win over Newcastle United as successful. All of them made mistakes, but important ones when especially focusing on the learning process of younger players. Because perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of first team football for a youth players is the physicality of the game and the limited time on the football a player actually has. The development of these players, and the ones that currently are out on loan, is worth keeping an eye on. Getting 1-2 of every youth class into the first team squad is vital for any team, especially Manchester United…
Which one of these players do you think will have the biggest chance of succeeding at United?