Manchester United have handed new contracts to three young players from their youth academy.
Forwards Joe Hugill and Charlie McNeill have agreed on long-term contracts after enjoying successful first seasons in the academy, as confirmed by the official Man United website.
Goalkeeper Paul Woolston has signed a one-year deal and will begin his fourth season with United.
✔ Paul Woolston
✔ Joe Hugill
✔ Charlie McNeill
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 26, 2021
Woolston played nine times for the Under-23s during the 2020/21 season and is a pivotal part of the academy’s goalkeeper department.
On the other hand, Hugill has made the jump to United’s Under-23s side, scoring 12 goals in 21 appearances.
Before joining the Red Devils in the summer of 2020, he had already been training with Sunderland’s senior team at 16.
United secured his services for £300,000 with plenty of interest from other Premier League teams.
The Englishman has been a revelation at the club, growing from strength to strength.
17-year-old Charlie McNeill has already caused a stir of excitement since re-joining Manchester United from cross-town rivals Manchester City.
McNeill grew up playing at Liverpool’s development centre before switching to Man United.
His speed, power, and finishing ability immediately caught the attention of scouts around the Premier League.
In 2013 he made the controversial switch to Manchester City to get more playing time. The decision was not taken lightly by his family of United fans.
Scoring 600 goals in six years for City’s academy, no one could argue that McNeill was an exceptional talent.
In his Under-15 alone, he netted 110 times and claimed 38 assists in 72 matches.
McNeill decided to re-join his boyhood club Manchester United in the summer of 2020. He signed for the Red Devils for an initial £675,000, rising to £1.4million.
The Englishman scored 25 goals for Neil Ryan’s Under-18s team last season, including all four in a 4-2 win over City last month when he celebrated by kissing the badge.
17-year-old Charlie McNeill scored over 600 goals for Manchester City at youth level.
Last year he joined rivals United for $1 million.
Today he scored four goals in the U18 derby and celebrated by kissing the United badge ???? pic.twitter.com/1suitXf48N
— B/R Football (@brfootball) February 13, 2021
One of the striking aspects of his game is the variety of goals scored. From cheeky tap-ins to 30-yard screamers, McNeill has it all in his locker.
Moreover, he is a natural finisher and always seems to be in the right place at the right time. His composure in one-on-one situations, coupled with the ability to finish with either foot, puts him a cut above the rest.
McNeill relishes matches against rivals and always tends to deliver in these special moments.
Scoring twice in two games against Liverpool U-18s and four goals in a single match against Manchester City U-18s, the teenager has proven his knack to turn up for the big occasion.
If he continues developing at this rate, the sky is the limit for McNeill. He has the talent and mentality to become one of the United academy’s finest products.