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Manchester United youngster Alejandro Garnacho is about to get something he’s wanted for 12 months

Manchester United youngster Alejandro Garnacho

The 2022/23 Premier League season started with disappointment for Manchester United supporters, eager to move past a lackluster prior campaign. Unfortunately, those hopes were dashed as Brighton secured a surprising 2-1 victory, leaving Old Trafford in disbelief.

Erik ten Hag’s appointment had promised a fresh era, but the opening match showcased persisting issues. Pascal Gross’ first-half double dealt a blow to the anticipated optimism, highlighting the uphill battle ahead. Reflecting on the situation post-match, an honest Ten Hag acknowledged the magnitude of the challenge he faced.

The initial defeat, though disheartening, wasn’t entirely unexpected given the team’s embryonic state. The starting lineup featured players like Harry Maguire, Fred, and Scott McTominay, but this composition would evolve significantly over the season. Notably, Christian Eriksen took an unconventional role as a false nine with Jadon Sancho on the right wing.

Brighton’s subsequent impressive season, securing their highest-ever finish, added context to the challenging opener. Cristiano Ronaldo’s half-time entry briefly ignited hope, yet Ten Hag’s substitutions came late and failed to alter the outcome. Young talents like Alejandro Garnacho faced a rocky period, marked by attitude issues. Garnacho’s absence from key matches, including preseason games, reflected a disconnect between his potential and his training efforts.

Garnacho’s redemption journey began with improved behavior and impactful displays in the Carabao Cup and Europa League. This transformation earned him a place in the first-team squad and culminated in a productive debut senior season, contributing with five goals and assists. This progress surprised even the academy coaches who oversee his development.

As the anniversary of the Brighton defeat approached, Garnacho’s aspiration to start the 23/24 season opener grew. With Rasmus Hojlund sidelined, Garnacho’s directness emerged as a valuable asset, especially against teams like Wolves expected to defend deep.

In contrast to the more central role Jadon Sancho played in preseason, Garnacho’s pace and attacking threat make him a compelling option for the left wing. United fans eagerly anticipate his potential contribution, eager to witness the remarkable progress he’s made over the past year, with hopes that he could prove instrumental in unlocking stubborn defenses.

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