United loanee makes impressive senior debut

Monday 02 August 2021 10:14

Manchester United defender Reece Devine made an eye-catching start to life on loan at St Johnstone, with a Man-of-the-Match display against Ross County.

The full-back's maiden senior appearance drew praise from manager Callum Davidson following the 0-0 draw, after going close to scoring and winning a penalty that was missed by Ali McCann.

“I thought he was excellent," said Davidson. "All credit to Reece, that was his first senior game. He came up from Manchester United and has worked extremely hard. You can see he’s got ability, he’s got pace. He will be a threat for us. He put in a very good performance.”

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Devine told The Herald newspaper: “It’s a step up to play first-team football. It’s a lot more physical than Reserves football.

“I had a few options but this was the one that was most attractive to me.

“I think I can improve my game and help the team. I’m getting fitter and stronger all the time and these 90 minutes will help that. I’ll definitely be looking to contribute going forward as well as in defence.”

Next up is a big clash in Istanbul with Galatasaray in the Europa League on Thursday and a chance to come up against Colombian striker Radamel Falcao, who had a loan spell with the Reds during Louis van Gaal's time in charge.

“What an opportunity for us as a team and for me as an individual," stressed Reece. "We’ll all go there and be ourselves and show everybody what we are capable of.

“We haven’t really spoken about them much. We put all our focus into Ross County. Now we can start preparing for Thursday’s game. Obviously, Galatasaray are a massive club with a huge fanbase.

“They’ll have a big crowd behind them and they’re a great footballing team. Falcao was obviously at Manchester United. He’s a great player with so much experience at the very highest level and he's not alone.

“Of course, it will be a real challenge for the boys but it’s something we’ll relish. “This is what football is about – what more could you ask for?”