Manchester United’s academy is known world wide for being the best. Over the years, it has created a staggering amount footballing legends such as; Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Marcus Rashford and more recently Mason Greenwood. But just how good are the current group of youth players?
The two main groups for the academy consist of the under 18’s and the under 23’s, both of which are in the top divisions for their respective age groups. Not only are both teams in the top division, but they are both contesting for the number one spot. The under 18’s are especially talented, winning nine out of their first ten games.
The Stars of the Academy
Dillon Hoogewerf – 17
Hoogewerf joined United’s academy in 2019 from Ajax and has already been promoted to the under 23’s on several occasions, despite only being 17. The striker has been deadly in front of goal for both the under 18’s and the under 23’s, getting 16 goal contributions (g/a) in 24 games for the academy teams last season. The Dutchman also appeared for the Holland youth team last season, scoring twice in six games. Before joining United, Hoogewerf won the under 19’s league title with Ajax.
Ethan Galbraith – 19
The young midfield maestro, dubbed as the next Scholes, joined United in 2017 after a trial and has been a pivotal part of every season since for the academy. Galbraith has amassed over 60 appearances for the under 18’s and the under 23’s. Playing as a defensive midfielder, he has produced 11 goals and 7 assists in total. His talent has impressed both Solskjaer and Northern Ireland’s head coach, Michael O’Neill, as he has gained his professional debut under both. Since his arrival, Galbraith has helped win the Premier league, under 18’s, north league title after scoring a goal of the month winner against City to secure the title.
Charlie McNeill – 17
McNeill is a relatively new member of the academy after joining from rivals, Manchester City, in the 2020 summer transfer window. He supported United from a young age and was glad to become a part of the club. He has already scored four goals in seven appearances for the youth team, scoring a brace on his debut against Derby County. McNeill’s goal scoring record across his youth career is very impressive, scoring over 600 goals in all age groups. The Englishman has appeared for England’s under 16’s team, scoring once in four games.
The future of Manchester United looks very bright with the sheer quality of the academy players and the potential they have. United’s academy is arguably the best in the world for a reason, not just for the incredible history but for the world class pedigree that is installed into every player.