Paddy McNair is living on cloud nine at the minute and has described his rise into the first-team at Manchester United as a ‘crazy couple of months’.
The 19-year-old made his senior debut against West Ham after being drafted into the side by Louis van Gaal in the middle of a defensive injury crisis and played fantastic.
He was rewarded for his good performance with a start the following week against Everton where he was equally as impressive and returned from injury three weeks later against Manchester City before making his third start in United’s 1-0 win over Crystal Palace at the weekend.
It’s been a meteoric rise from the U21s for MCNair and he is loving the opportunities he has been given.
“It’s been a crazy couple of months,” he said.
“I was playing with the Under-21s two months ago, then all of a sudden I’m playing in front of 75,000 people at Old Trafford.
“It has happened so fast. Last year I think I played 11 games for the U21s so hopefully I’ll be close to 11 for the first team by the end of the season.”
For someone who is 19, McNair doesn’t show it on the pitch and was even trusted by Van Gaal to come on against City away in the derby which is a real testament to his belief in the Northern Irishman.
He added: “When I was growing up, I always wanted to play for Manchester United, and now I am playing in Manchester derbies, so it’s been good and I’ve loved every minute of it.”
Despite being 19, McNair has emerged as United’s most consistent and reliable centre back with his performances. Instead of being overawed by the opportunity, he has taken full advantage of it.
He is still only four games into his United career but the early signs from McNair are that he has the mindset and attitude to match his ability, so has all the ingredients to become a world class defender in the future.