United's side the youngest during opening weekend
Manchester United's starting line-up against Chelsea on Sunday was the youngest named by any of the Premier League clubs on matchday one.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer selected five homegrown players in his XI - Scott McTominay, Andreas Pereira, Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford - with two more on the bench in Axel Tuanzebe and Mason Greenwood, who came on in the closing stages of the 4-0 triumph over the Blues. Daniel James, the 21-year-old summer arrival from Swansea City, was another of the substitutes used.
The last time that many Academy graduates started a Premier League opener for the club was back in 2008, when Sir Alex Ferguson picked Wes Brown, Darren Fletcher, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and Fraizer Campbell for the home draw with Newcastle United.
When asked about the stat, Ole replied:
“We’re going to improve and we’re nowhere near where we can be, or where we have to be. We have to play better to get results against loads of teams. Then again, we’ve got experienced boys helping them: Ashley [Young], Nemanja [Matic], Juan [Mata], who are guiding these boys.”
There was certainly a youthful feel to the team and plenty of energy - United out-ran the Londoners over the course of the game (107.89 km to 106.63 km, according to Opta statistics).
The line-up was the youngest United have fielded since the final day of the 2016/17 season, when Jose Mourinho opted to play a number of youngsters against Crystal Palace, with the Europa League final with Ajax on the horizon.
The average age on that day in May at Old Trafford was 22 years and 284 days, the lowest the club have recorded in the Premier League era.
LOWEST AVERAGE AGE ON OPENING WEEKEND
1. United - 24 years, 227 days
2. Norwich City - 25 years, 89 days
3. Southampton - 25 years, 102 days
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