Don't miss our UTD Podcast with Chong and Gomes
Manchester United youngsters Angel Gomes and Tahith Chong are the latest players to feature in the popular UTD Podcast series.
The attacking duo sat down with Sam Homewood and Helen Evans earlier this year to discuss topics such as their favourite squad numbers, their choice of initiation songs on pre-season tours and their ultimate ambitions for their careers, in an episode you can listen to on Deezer and all your preferred podcast platforms.
Gomes, who grew up in Salford surrounded by Reds and is the godson of Nani, also recalls making his senior United debut at the back end of the 2016/17 campaign against Crystal Palace, when he replaced the great Wayne Rooney at Old Trafford.
UTD Podcast: When Gomes replaced RooneyVideo
“It was crazy. I remember warming up and Mourinho was shouting at me and I was just day-dreaming, and staring at the fans stretching. It wasn’t until a steward was like, ‘Angel, the manager’ that I realised I was going to come on,” he said.
“I just remember Rooney walking off and thinking whoa, this is actually happening. When I came on I just forgot about everything and tried to enjoy every moment. I was so focused I just wanted to make an impression.”
When he was growing up, there was a sense of expectancy on Gomes's shoulders to fulfil his potential as a United player, but the 20-year-old took it all in his stride despite the doubts he received off teachers and coaches at a young age.
“It’s always in the back of your head. Growing up you always hear comments about how hard it is to make it into the first team and the percentages of how many people don’t. That’s always playing in your head and that’s coming not just from coaches, it’s coming from the outside, teachers everything. When they ask you what you want to be and you say a footballer they say it’s slim,” Angel admits.
“Everyone was a big Red where I grew up and there was pressure with them saying they couldn't wait to see me on the TV and you're thinking what if I don't? But everyone’s proud and it’s a great feeling for me to be here.”
UTD Podcast: Our new home kit is nice!Video
Chong, who started playing football after the 2006 World Cup, has made 15 appearances in all competitions for the Reds this term and speaks about how he hopes to gain more opportunities in the first team.
Tahith also discusses how Angel, eight months his junior, helped him to acclimatise when he arrived at the club in 2016.
“I think United always has had a history of bringing young players through. So whenever you play you know that if you do your best and you work hard then the opportunity will be there.
UTD Podcast: Chong's autograph is a 'shambles'Video
“Before I came I had already spoken to Angel a couple of times,” Tahith admits.
“I knew him quite well before I came. Obviously he made it easier for the first couple of months. Even when I was injured, I think he got injured at the same time, so we were in the gym together everyday.”
The full Angel Gomes and Tahith Chong episode is available on Deezer and all your favourite podcast platforms. If you're enjoying this podcast series then please consider leaving a rating and a review, wherever you listen.