Manchester United hero Norman Whiteside believes Jesse Lingard, Adnan Januzaj and Wilfried Zaha have all done enough to start Saturday’s Barclays Premier League opener at Swansea City.
The Old Trafford idol, who scored 67 goals in 274 appearances between 1981 and 1988, has been hugely impressed by the talented trio throughout this summer’s Tour 2013 presented by Aon and thinks any one of them could get the nod at the Liberty Stadium.
However, having studied United’s pre-season form, Whiteside feels the side can still improve but admits such progress will only occur once David Moyes has a settled squad to pick from.
“I have seen quite a few of the games on MUTV and I was here for Rio’s game,” Norman told ManUtd.com. “I think we still have a bit to do but the team has been swapping and changing a lot, some of the main players haven’t been playing and some of them didn’t join up until late.
“It wasn’t a mix-up, but the pre-season has been hard for the manager to gather his team. The one big plus is surely the three youngsters Lingard, Januzaj and Zaha coming through and being outstanding. Who is to say that they might not get a start at Swansea?
“You have no divine given right to be the first name on the team sheet, you have to earn it and I think those three youngsters have done very well. They will be pushing for a place.”
When quizzed on who the boss might select from the start against the Swans, Whiteside was reluctant to name an XI – quite simply, because it is far too hard to predict. However, the Irishman does think the boss will favour a familiar spine to the team.
“I just don’t know, it is a difficult one for the manager,” Norman explained. “I just wonder if he will put a youngster in, we’ll have to wait and see with the injuries. But he’ll have the backbone of the team with