Academy Weekly: Cup focus continues
Manchester United Under-18s secured comfortable progress in one cup competition and were knocked out of another in a busy and exciting week for the club’s Academy.
Elsewhere in the Football League, Academy graduates and loanees made starring impressions, with one young midfielder making his senior debut for Scottish Premiership club Rangers.
Here’s everything you need to know from the last seven days...
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Tributes paid to Eric Harrison
Everyone at Manchester United had the family of Eric Harrison in their thoughts this week, on the third anniversary of his passing. Eric’s influence at this football club was monumental, the legendary youth team coach having played a key role in the development of scores of first-team players and international stars. As we remember Eric, it’s worth reading the tributes paid to him upon the announcement of his death in 2019.
UEFA Youth League draw
United will play Borussia Dortmund on 1/2 March in the UEFA Youth League round of 16. See more details below.
Date set for UEFA Youth League clashArticle
United will host Borussia Dortmund in the round of 16 at Leigh Sports Village.
U18 PL Cup defeat
United were knocked out of the U18 Premier League Cup on Saturday morning after a 3-2 defeat to Chelsea. The Reds had taken a two-goal lead with goals from Alejandro Garnacho – a first-time finish after United intercepted possession high up – and Manni Norkett – converting from the spot after being brought down by Chelsea goalkeeper Prince Adegoke.
Chances for both sides followed, with Tom Wooster denying Jude Soonsup-Bell with a strong, outstretched right hand. Chelsea were soon buoyed when Ronnie Stutter found the bottom-left corner from the edge of the box. The equaliser followed late on, from Chelsea’s top goalscorer Malik Mothersille, and then Silko Thomas scored the winner, finding space on the edge of the box to finish into the bottom corner.
Omari Forson went agonisingly close late on, lifting the ball over the heads of two players before shooting just wide of the right post.
FA Youth Cup victory
Manchester United will host Leicester City in the FA Youth Cup sixth round after a 4-1 victory over Everton at Old Trafford.
An end-to-end first half saw the Toffees head in front early on before United came from behind with a penalty scored by Charlie McNeill and a header from Kobbie Mainoo. After the break, the Reds dominated and made it count, with Sam Mather and Alejandro Garnacho netting to secure a comfortable victory and progression in the cup.
Watch highlights below and see more reaction here. United's match against Leicester has been scheduled for Thursday 24 February. The game will be played at Old Trafford and supporters are encouraged to attend. Tickets will be free and on sale shortly. For more details, head here.
FA Youth Cup: United 4 Everton 1
Watch the goals from our FA Youth Cup win over Everton, and stay until the end for Garnacho's solo effort...
Academy graduate achievements
Twin brothers Michael and Will Keane both scored on Saturday, finding the back of the net just three minutes apart. Michael got Everton’s second goal in a 3-0 win against Leeds, before Will helped himself to a 16th goal of the season for Wigan Athletic, converting a penalty as the Latics won 2-1 against Charlton Athletic, cementing their second-place spot in League One.
Congratulations to Academy graduate Charlie McCann, the 19-year-old Irish midfielder who made his senior debut for Rangers at the weekend, where he signed a three-year contract last summer. Charlie came off the bench to replace Amad, the United loanee at Ibrox, for a 20-minute appearance in Rangers' 3-0 win over Annan Athletic in the Scottish Cup.
McCann said: “I’m buzzing. Obviously I’ve worked hard for this moment, but I’ve got to appreciate what the boss has done.
“He’s gave us young lads chances and obviously it’s only the start, but it’s a great feeling to make your debut for this club. But it’s great to get the first one [debut] out of the way and hopefully there will be more. But I’ve got to keep working hard.”
James Garner and Dylan Levitt both hit the headlines with excellent midweek goals for Nottingham Forest and Dundee United respectively.
Garner’s strike helped Forest to a 2-0 win over Blackburn, and Steve Cooper’s side went on to earn a 2-2 draw against Stoke City at the weekend. Garner played a crucial role in that game, too, sending in a free-kick which was tapped home by Ryan Yates for an added-time equaliser.
Levitt’s Tangerines sides won 2-0 against Motherwell thanks to his goal on Wednesday and then the Welsh midfielder played 74 minutes of the team’s 1-0 Cup victory over Partick Thistle. Read more about the midfield pair’s goals and watch the strikes below.
Loan Watch: Two brilliant goals!Article
Watch strikes from Garner and Levitt as we round up all the midweek action.
Teden Mengi kept a cleansheet for Birmingham City in their 3-0 home win over Luton, while Di’Shon Bernard was an unused substitute in Hull City’s two Championship fixtures in the last seven days. Reece Devine’s Walsall beat Tranmere Rovers 1-0 under interim manager Neil McDonald. Previous boss Matt Taylor had been sacked earlier in the week after a defeat by the same scoreline to Scunthorpe United.
COMING UP THIS WEEK
Under-23s at Palace
Neil Wood’s team will play at Crystal Palace’s newly built Academy site on Sunday in a 14:00 GMT kick-off in Premier League 2. As the game is at the same time as the first team’s trip to Leeds, it cannot be shown live on MUTV.
Under-18s face Blackburn
It’s another Saturday morning fixture for Travis Binnion’s boys, who are at Blackburn Rovers and kick off at 11:00 GMT. The match will be broadcast live on MUTV.