Demetri Mitchell: I want to become one of the best full-backs in Europe

by Leo Nieboer

Demetri Mitchell has laid bare his ambition to become one of the best full-backs in Europe at Manchester United in the future.

The 21-year-old made his senior debut for Man United back in May, impressing at left-back in a 2-0 win over Crystal Palace, and joined Hearts on loan last month.

And he has made a scintillating start to life north of the border, claiming three ‘Man of the Match’ awards in five games and netting his first goal of the season against St Johnstone last weekend.

Speaking earlier this week, Mitchell made it clear that he wanted to use his time in Scotland as a springboard to compete for a place under Jose Mourinho this season.

“I’m focused on trying to win the Scottish Cup,” he said. “I want to help Hearts finish as high up in the table as possible because I know they’re trying to get into Europe, which would be a big thing for the club. Then I’ll to go back to United, evaluate how things are there and hopefully be in and around the first team, that’s the plan.”

“On a personal level, my dream is to become one of the best attacking full-backs in Europe and I do think it’s possible.

“Right now, my main goal is to play as many games as possible in professional football and gain as much experience as I can before I go back to Manchester United.”

The American youngster isn’t afraid to set his sights high, to outline where exactly he wants to go, and such a mindset – confident, driven, fixated on always improving – aligns perfectly with what supporters want to see from any young players, echoing the sentiments espoused by academy head Nicky Butt.

Mitchell remains at the starting point of his career and his biggest challenges are still ahead of him, but the early markings are unquestionably encouraging. His display against Palace, whilst overshadowed by Josh Harrop‘s goalscoring debut on the day, was without doubt the most complete – packed with energy and purpose and deadly execution.

And with left-back a current problem area for Mourinho, Mitchell can have every right to feel confident about further first team opportunities next term.

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