Chong and Greenwood inspired by Academy predecessors
After proudly collecting Player of the Year awards at Old Trafford on Thursday night, Tahith Chong and Mason Greenwood looked towards a future of working hard to emulate their Manchester United Academy predecessors.
English striker Greenwood was given the Jimmy Murphy Youth Team trophy, before Dutch forward Chong took home the Denzil Haroun Reserve Team prize.
Both of the prospects made first-team debuts earlier this season and notably featured in the away Champions League win at Paris Saint-Germain, but their feet are planted firmly on the ground.
When they stepped down from the stage at the club’s annual awards night, they spoke enthusiastically about the challenge of following the many homegrown players who have established themselves in our senior ranks.
“Well, you see all of those players do it and think ‘why can't I do it?’ So, obviously, I look up to those players and hopefully I can do the same as them.
“I am just going to carry on working hard at Carrington, working with my team-mates and hopefully I will be able to get a few more chances. I am just going to keep on working hard.”
Chong, who featured for the first team against Huddersfield Town last weekend, agreed that the famous youth products provide plenty of inspiration.
“It is just brilliant to see Jesse [Lingard], Marcus [Rashford] and Scott [McTominay] being there when we go up to training, with the way they help us,”he said.“It is just really good to see for us.”
Quizzed on his progress this campaign and the opportunities that have come his way, Tahith continued:
“You never want to expect stuff.
“I was just enjoying the journey and seeing what comes to my journey. Obviously, that happened in Paris and it is still indescribable. Coming on at Huddersfield as well was amazing. Even seeing Mason and the other boys involved was amazing.”
Impressively professional, both of the award-winning young players were quick to thank the support networks that continue to help them progress in the Academy.
“I am extremely happy and I wouldn't be able to do it without all of the coaching staff or my team-mates, so I would like to thank them,” said Greenwood.
“It is an extremely proud moment for everyone who has worked with me, the coaches and my family. I think it is good.
“Like I said on stage, I could not have done it without my team-mates so I really appreciate that too.”
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