A chance for Forson and Kambwala to reflect

Tuesday 26 March 2024 11:45

Manchester United's storied history regarding Academy graduates has already seen two recent inductees, with Omari Forson and Willy Kambwala etching their names into the club's first-team record books.

Kambwala became graduate number 248 when he started against West Ham United back in December, featuring for 84 minutes in our defeat at the London Stadium.

Despite the result, the defender has since continued to impress under Erik ten Hag this season and is already making an impact at the age of 19.

Three further top-flight appearances have soon followed and the larger-than-life character recently spoke to MUTV at Carrington after being awarded his debut ball from the Premier League.

Forson and Kambwala receive debut balls Video

Forson and Kambwala receive debut balls

United duo Omari Forson and Willy Kambwala were recently each awarded a special Premier League gift at Carrington...

"I've had the opportunity to say it already, but it is my dream come true," said Kambwala.

"To be able to play for this club, the biggest club in the world. I am just so proud, so grateful to have been able to achieve that.

"It is something that I will never forget, no matter what happens next in my career.

"To have been able to play my first professional game in my career for United is just the best thing to have ever happened in my whole career."
Friend and fellow team-mate Forson, who came on for the Reds during our 4-3 win at Molineux earlier this year to become our 249th Academy first-team graduate, has continued to develop into an exciting attacking option Ten Hag considers week in, week out.

Born in Hammersmith, the teenager has five senior appearances under his belt, with three coming in the Premier League and another two in the Emirates FA Cup this season.

Humble and hard working, Forson hopes more is to come for the Reds and wishes to contribute towards our hopes of success in the very near future.
"One hundred percent, it can only aid in my development," began Omari at Carrington recently.

"I can't be more thankful, honestly, I have wanted this opportunity to come along for so long and I am, like I say, so grateful.

"There is definitely more to come."
Director of Academy Nick Cox and technical director Darren Fletcher were in attendance to help present the teenage pair with their awards, with the pride beaming from both of their faces.

Cox, who has seen both players grow from young adults into senior members of United squad, said the hard work will not stop there for the pair.
Nick Cox and Darren Fletcher helped with presenting both Omari and Willy with their respective awards.
"It's a really important moment in anyone's career, their debut and, to debut at this club, is kind of extra special," said Cox.

"It is really hard thing to do but, as you probably heard from what I said to the boys, as much as we are celebrating this landmark, they know there is a lot to do moving forwards.

"They will both have their own ambitions of making those next little landmarks in the journeys, whether that is 10 games, 20 games or being in the starting XI on a regular basis.

"So they have a lot of work to do, but it is important that we stop and mark the occasion and celebrate."