Kieran McKenna: Manchester United Under-18s getting closer to Chelsea’s level

Kieran McKenna: Manchester United Under-18s getting closer to Chelsea’s level

Manchester United Under-18s head coach Kieran McKenna has reflected on the year his side have had and insists the club are closing the gap on Chelsea at the age level.

Chelsea’s Under-18s have dominated for years and have won the FA Youth Cup for the past five seasons, and defeated United 3-0 in the national final on Saturday afternoon after both teams won the northern and southern divisions respectively.

Talking to MUTV following the defeat to Chelsea, a positive Kieran McKenna said: “I think it’s been a really good year. I thought the boys wouldn’t have been capable of that performance in the first half at the start of the season, to be honest, so it’s credit to their work over the course of the season.

“I think individually we have shown we can compete all over the pitch and I think, as a team, we are definitely getting closer. Obviously, they [Chelsea] are the dominant side at this level and nobody really has found a way to beat them this season in a competitive match but I think we are getting closer.”

McKenna, 31, joined Manchester United from Tottenham Hotspur in September 2016 and the academy has been in excellent shape since, and he was already looking forward to next season after the final match of the season against Chelsea earlier on.

He continued: “I think that first half was as tough a game as they have been given this season at this level. It sets us up nicely for next year for the boys individually and especially for the boys who are young enough to come back stronger and that includes the lads who are on international duty.”

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