Youth. Courage. Success. These are the key principles of Manchester United that you will see featured in United’s new home kit. It is likely to also be the major driving force for Ethan Ennis’ decision to make the unspeakable switch from Liverpool to Manchester United.
The talented 16 year old featured in almost 6 hours of football for Liverpool’s Under-18’s last season. His 5 goals at a rate of 1.26 per 90 minutes definitely left a huge impression. Of these, it was his hattrick off the bench in the FA Youth Cup against Sutton United that stood out. Teams no doubt took notice of his versatility as a goal scorer from attacking midfield.
Whether it is being a predator in the penalty area or driving into the box, Ennis demonstrated exactly why he is so sought after. His technical prowess on show justified why Liverpool were so keen to get him signed up on a scholarship. Sadly for them, he made the courageous decision to turn the offer down, for what he hopes is his path to success.
The fact of the matter is that Manchester United have shown greater prowess at youth development. The club have had numerous academy players who end up thriving in Europe’s top 5 leagues. It is also United’s ability to bring through talent into the first team, which probably edged him towards us rather than his other suitor, Chelsea.
It certainly won’t be plain sailing for Ennis now he has joined United, as the youth ranks are currently bustling with attacking talent. Yet, that challenge in itself will serve him well in realising his potential. This push will help him be the best player he can be in his quest for a long and successful career.
As for United, Liverpool definitely won’t be best pleased about losing one of their brightest talents to their biggest rivals. The consequence will thus be that they won’t allow this move to happen on the cheap. Hence, they will no doubt seek a sizeable development fee. Given that it is unlikely that they agree such a fee, it will be up to a tribunal to decide this figure for the clubs. Irrespective of that, his signature is a significant signal of intent from United, especially for the club’s long term plans. You only have to look throughout the club’s history to realise why. The periods of significant success have come about when they have properly utilised the storied academy. United will no doubt be hoping for that trend to continue.