Garnacho named U18s Player of the Year

Wednesday 11 May 2022 17:30

Manchester United's Alejandro Garnacho has been named the Jimmy Murphy Young Player of the Year for 2021/22.

The 17-year-old Argentine-Spanish winger made his first-team debut in April’s Premier League draw with Chelsea and has since been involved in several matchday squads.

Five goals in the Under-18s’ run to the FA Youth Cup final have been the highlight of a prolific season for Garnacho, who joined United from Atletico Madrid in 2020.

Particularly notable was his two-goal performance in the 2-1 quarter-final victory over Leicester City, in which he first equalised with a drilled free-kick before sealing the win late on with an emphatic left-footed finish. He also netted in games against Scunthorpe United, Everton and Wolves.

FA Youth Cup: The story so far Video

FA Youth Cup: The story so far

Must-see | The Under-18s squad talk us through the highlights of our journey to the FA Youth Cup final...

Such performances were rewarded with a call-up to the Argentina national team set-up and an Under-20s debut for La Albiceleste followed.

Nick Cox, head of Academy, and Harry Maguire, club captain, will present Alejandro with the Jimmy Murphy trophy ahead of Wednesday night's FA Youth Cup final at Old Trafford.

“Alejandro has had a fantastic season and really deserves this recognition," Cox said.

“There have been a number of Under-18s players who have performed exceptionally well throughout the year. Reaching an FA Youth Cup final is a fantastic achievement, so this was not an easy decision to make.

“Alejandro has shown great determination from the day that he arrived here from Spain, in the middle of a pandemic. He has adapted extremely well to life in Manchester and continues to improve on the pitch every day.

“Making his first-team debut last month was the culmination of a great deal of hard work from Alejandro himself, his family and a dedicated group of Academy staff. The call-up that he received from Argentina is another fantastic indicator of the progress he has made this season.

“He remains grounded considering all that he has achieved this year and we know that he will continue to grow within our youth development system."

A special moment for Garnacho Video

A special moment for Garnacho

Late in the match, Alejandro Garnacho became the latest Academy graduate to make his senior debut...

The Under-18s annual award is named after Jimmy Murphy, one of the most important men in the history of this club. Murphy played several significant roles in his decades of service at Old Trafford, first as the coach behind the Busby Babes, and then in helping to keep the red flag flying after the Munich Air Disaster.

“No one outside the club will ever know how important he was to our success,” commented Busby.

Jimmy Murphy Young Player of the Year winners

1982/83: Norman Whiteside
1983/84: Mark Hughes
1984/85: Mark Hughes
1985/86: Simon Ratcliffe
1986/87: Gary Walsh
1987/88: Lee Martin
1988/89: Mark Robins
1989/90: Lee Martin
1990/91: Ryan Giggs
1991/92: Ryan Giggs
1992/93: Paul Scholes
1993/94: Phil Neville
1994/95: Terry Cooke
1995/96: Ronnie Wallwork
1996/97: John Curtis
1997/98: Wes Brown
1998/99: Wes Brown
1999/00: Bojan Djordjic
Shola Shoretire was the 2020/21 recipient of the Jimmy Murphy award.

2000/01: Alan Tate
2001/02: Paul Tierney
2002/03: Ben Collett
2003/04: Jonathan Spector
2004/05: Giuseppe Rossi
2005/06: Darron Gibson
2006/07: Craig Cathcart
2007/08: Danny Welbeck
2008/09: Federico Macheda
2009/10: Will Keane
2010/11: Ryan Tunnicliffe
2011/12: Mats Daehli
2012/13: Ben Pearson
2013/14: James Wilson
2014/15: Axel Tuanzebe
2015/16: Marcus Rashford
2016/17: Angel Gomes
2017/18: Tahith Chong
2018/19: Mason Greenwood
2019/20: Anthony Elanga
2020/21: Shola Shoretire
2021/22: Alejandro Garnacho