Scott McTominay produced a composed midfield display during Manchester United’s 0-0 draw with Sevilla on Wednesday night.
The youngster was handed just his second ever Champions League start at the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán Stadium, with Jose Mourinho controversially picking the 21-year-old over Paul Pogba.
But the manager was vindicated by a growingly confident, dynamic display on and off the ball as McTominay moved the ball with composure and kept tabs on the potentially dangerous Ever Banega.
McTominay’s numbers from the game shed light on what was a solid midfield outing from the latest product off Man United’s youth production line.
9 out of 10. Scott McTominay v Seville
– 32/35 passes completed (5/5 in the attacking third)
– 1 shot (on target)
– 9 ball recoveries
– 1 interception
— Joe Sillett (@JoeSillett) February 21, 2018
He begun the game tentatively, just feeling the ball at his feet, getting an impression of the pace set by the hosts, but by the end McTominay was in full flow.
This may have been a disappointing game in many respects but to see the youngster, alongside always keeping track on any onrushing white shirts, shake off his nerves and enter the groove of a scrappy encounter – pinching the ball off opponents and laying it on for teammates, always drifting around the pitch with intent – was a delight to see, a testament to the superb ethic drilled into youngsters at United.
Some have noted that his passing range needs to improve and that is unquestionably true. His circulation was, at times, just a tad too slow and inaccurate. But the raw temperament is certainly there already; the rest, with more minutes under his belt, is bound to follow.