Ole Gunnar Solskjaer spoke highly of young midfielder James Garner ahead of Manchester United’s trip to Crystal Palace on Wednesday night.
The 17-year-old travelled with the Man United squad on their pre-season tour and has been included in several match-day squads by Solskjaer.
Garner may well make his senior debut after it was revealed by the boss in Tuesday’s press conference that ten United players were injured for the Palace clash.
But Solskjaer lifted spirits by reminding supporters that the club has another Michael Carrick in Garner.
Ole: “They’ve been part of our training for a long time. Angel has been with England U17s, if he gets the chance he’ll do well. Jimmy Garner is a Michael Carrick but 20 years younger. Chongy will definitely be taking people on. They’re ready. They’re kids.” #mufc
— United Xtra (@utdxtra) February 26, 2019
Angel Gomes and Tahith Chong, two skillful and mobile attackers, are likely to fill the gaps on the bench, potentially coming on for either Romelu Lukaku or Alexis Sanchez if things aren’t going to plan. Supporters are excited to see more of them.
The pair have tasted first team football before and shown supporters what they can do. Garner hasn’t. Playing on Wednesday, against an aggressive Palace midfield, would resemble uncharted territory. He is still just 17.
But those at United, and Solskjaer especially, clearly believe he is ready and the youngster’s calming, guided presence on the ball at the base of midfield may be the perfect antidote to losing Nemanja Matic.