Tyler Blackett is living the dream at Manchester United and thrives on the fact he is a local lad.
Having been born in Hulme, the 20-year-old has spent his entire life in Manchester and worked his way through United’s academy sides to the first-team this season.
It means his bond to the club goes much deeper than any player who has been brought in and it’s something he is proud of.
“It means everything to me,” he told ManUtd.com.
“I was brought up here in Manchester and playing now for United is like a dream come true. Hopefully, I’ll continue to do my best for the club.
“Being a local lad, there’s no extra pressure but it’s something I thrive on. As one of the more local lads, I know what this club means. Don’t get me wrong, the foreign players know Manchester United as well but being a local lad gives you extra incentive to do well.
“You know the history and which players have come through with my being here all through the ranks. I know what it means to me and my family as well.”
Local players who have grown up playing right through to the U21s before breaking into the first-team are without doubt the best type. Bringing in an established world class star is certainly exciting to watch but nothing beats watching a youngster with potential blossom into a superstar. Seeing the growth curve from the very beginning is a very endearing experience.
Blackett is in contention to start against Manchester City on Sunday but is likely to be behind Marcos Rojo in the pecking order, which is a shame as he knows all about the local rivalry: “I’m from Hulme, right in the city centre,” he added.
“There are City fans where I live and I get a bit of stick now and again but it’s all good banter and good to be around it. There’s a lot more of them now!
“Everyone in my family is a United fan and have always watched United over the years. With fans from both sides of Manchester being in the stadium, it provides an extra atmosphere to the ground. The derby is a great game to play in.”
Up until his red card against Leicester, Blackett was fantastic for United and has since had to settle for a place on the bench but the future bodes well for the boy who is Mancunian born and bred.