Manchester United’s exciting teenage left-back Alvaro Fernandez could be handed his senior debut by Ralf Rangnick when the Red Devils travel to Crystal Palace on Sunday. The 19-year-old has got people talking behind the scenes at Carrington this season after winning the club’s Under-23 Player of the Year award.
New boss Erik ten Hag is expected to be in the stands at Selhurst Park and this could be the perfect opportunity for the Dutchman to cast an eye over his new squad.
It would also be the perfect chance for youngsters like Fernandez to stake a claim for a first-team spot next season when a number of academy stars are expected to be promoted to Ten Hag’s squad.
The Manchester Evening News are reporting that Fernandez could be set to make his debut in south London after making the last three United’s matchday squads in the Premier League.
United’s supporters would welcome the chance to take a closer look at some of their next-generation at Selhurst Park and given some of the recent success stories including Anthony Elanga, there’s every chance they’re capable of stepping up.
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The same would apply to any of United’s other youth players if they are involved this weekend.
Cristiano Ronaldo has been using his experience on the training field to help a number of United’s youth prospects in recent weeks.
He was captured giving advice to Robbie Savage’s son Charlie in midweek before the 19-year-old put pen to paper on a new three-year contract extension until 2025.
Savage made his United debut in Rangnick’s second game in charge against Young Boys alongside Zidane Iqbal.
There has also been plenty of praise for attacking prodigy Alejandro Garnacho, who helped United win the FA Youth Cup against Nottingham Forest.
Garnacho is considered to be one of United’s most promising stars of the future after making his debut in the 1-1 draw with Chelsea.
Hannibal Mejbri also came off the bench against Liverpool and showcased his passion and commitment to the badge by thundering into some strong challenges at Anfield.
Five United players – Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic, Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata and Edinson Cavani – are set to wave goodbye but given their substandard contributions this season, Rangnick should prioritise playing the club’s youngsters ahead of any sentimental farewells against Palace.