FOOTBALL NEWS

2012/2013 Academy Appearances/Goals:

Liam Grimshaw: 27/0

Patrick McNair: 17/1

30/06/2013 10:24, Report by Adam Marshall

Duo to learn roles

Academy coach Paul McGuinness has wished his youngsters well for the step up next season and had words of encouragement for Liam Grimshaw and Paddy McNair.

The pair spent much of last term performing in the centre of defence for the Under-18s due to injuries and improved over the course of the campaign as they learned their new roles.

McNair came from Northern Ireland with a reputation as a talented midfielder while Grimshaw was also taken on board in a more advanced position and broke into the team as a full-back.

McGuinness expects both players to continue their development at Old Trafford and find their niche in the coming seasons.

"I think Liam Grimshaw is one of these players who might be very useful to a squad as he can play in a number of positions," McGuinness told ManUtd.com. "He can operate in front of the back four, in midfield, the right side of midfield, full-back. He could be very vital to a squad. Maybe a bit like John O’Shea or Phil Neville, he could be able to do all those roles and the reason he can do it is because he’s got a fantastic mentality. He will have a go in each position and he’s got good qualities.

"I was talking to Paddy McNair recently for the reviews at the end of the season. It’s nice to be able to say with him maybe you can play centre-midfield like a Michael Carrick role or at the back. The next year or couple of years will decide that for him. He’s got to develop himself.

"For someone like him, he has always been behind in his own age group so we had to play him down an age group. 

"We kept doing that every age until now he gets to Under-19 and Under-21 and obviously he’s going to be playing against people two or three years older than him. He can’t go down an age group again as it’s against the rules."

More: First-year intake for 2013/2014 | Quartet become third-year scholars 

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