James Garner completes loan move to Watford

James Garner completes loan move to Watford

Manchester United academy graduate James Garner has secured a loan move to Championship side Watford.

The 19-year-old is one of United’s brightest young talents but found the step up from Premier League 2 division two to the first team difficult last season, prompting Under 23’s coach Neil Wood and first team manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to make the decision to send him out on a season-long loan.

Garner had a number of Championship sides vying for his services, including Blackburn Rovers, Millwall and Huddersfield Town. However, he has opted for recently-relegated Watford, a team which in theory should be challenging for promotion to the Premier League and who are second favourites behind Norwich City to win the Championship.

A run in England’s second tier should be exactly what Garner needs to advance to the next stage of his career. The England youth international scored nine goals for the Under 23’s last season and helped guide them to promotion, but he clearly needs a tougher challenge.

He will be challenging the likes of Will Hughes and Nathaniel Chalobah for a central midfield starting berth at Vicarage Road.

It has been a good week for Garner, who was also awarded the Denzil Haroun reserve team player of the year award.

Garner joins Dylan Levitt, Tahith Chong, Aliou Traore, Joel Pereira and Matej Kovac as academy stars who have been loaned out for the coming season.

Manchester United’s new star Donny van de Beek will be the 13th Dutch national to play for the senior side. But how much do you know about the other 12? Take our quiz below to find out.

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Red Billy is co-editor of The Peoples Person, author of three books and totally obsessed with football's transfer market. Always glad to get feedback - write to redbilly (at thepeoplesperson.com) or click the email link to send a message.