Greenwood exclusive: My United story so far
This is a must-watch! Mason Greenwood takes us around the Aon Training Complex, reflecting on his meteoric rise...
Your journey began here in the Academy building. How has your breakthrough season been so far? "It's happened really quickly, to be honest with you. Everything has been quick and I've had to take everything on board really and just listen to what the manager and the other players have to say. It's been a hard journey but I'm nowhere near where I want to be yet. I'll carry on working hard and keep going." Ten goals so far - is that more than you would have expected at this stage? “If someone said to me at the start of the season, you'll score 10 goals for Manchester United in your first season, I would have taken it straight away. But I've done that now and want more really." You always want to improve and better yourself, and you have got great coaches here who can help you do that... “Ole is a major part. He has helped me a lot. Obviously, Kieran [McKenna] as well. I was in the youth team with him in my first season and he was the coach. He helped me a lot and now he is in the first team, I have not really changed anything - I am doing the same things that I did in the youth team with the first team." Inside the Academy building, the walls are covered with former graduates. How much does that inspire you? "You open those doors and see the players on there, you think that you want to be on there one day. That is what all of the little kids and players up to the youth team walk through and see. Hopefully, then you're older, you can be on here as well." We're standing here by Ryan Giggs's picture. Does that history inspire you? "If you are good enough then you are old enough. You have got to keep working and working and working. If something is in your way then you have got to push it out of your way to get there." Nothing seems to faze you... "Yeah, I just get on with it, I just get my head down and work as hard as I can. So all of the challenges that come to, I just do my best to try to overcome them." Which area of your game do you want to improve? “Heading goals. I only scored three or four in the youth team. I've not scored one in the first team and it'd be nice to get one this season. If I work on my heading, it would probably get me two or three extra goals a season so, if I work on that, I can get more goals really." Ole has said we want to score more scrappy goals. Is that something you're working on? "Yeah, I am always working on little finishes, like when the balls just drop in down the side and you turn to finish it straightaway. Hopefully all of the front lads can get a few of those this season." Is Ole a great guy to listen to about goals? "Yeah, he has done it himself so he knows what he is talking about really so everyone listens to him." Does this main building bring back memories? "Yeah, obviously I just remember playing a few games in here, the little five-a-side pitches and there were a few tournaments in here that bring back memories. It was an important time. You would come here and practice after school, before training starts." We talk about you being two-footed. Do you slightly favour the left? "Yeah I do slightly favour the left. The one where I just touch it across my body, I like that one as well, but if it comes on the right then I will use my right as well." You take penalties with your right foot - why is that? "I was playing against City and I used to take them with my left all of the time. It was an important game and I missed, so I just told myself I wouldn't take them with my left anymore. I was 13 or 14, maybe, and every since then I've been confident with my right foot. It just feels normal to me." There is a set-piece pecking order in the first team. You would feel confident though? "Yeah, I did a few in the youth team and we always practice after training. If Juan is not on them, or if Fred is not on them, then I will step up." Is Juan somebody you can learn from? "He has been here for quite a bit now and obviously he was at Chelsea as well. I followed him there and I followed him at United. Now I train with him and play with him week in and week out. It is amazing to have somebody like that, with so much experience. You just look at him and can tell he is a quality player who you can learn so much from on the pitch." How important is it to build relationships on the pitch? "Obviously it is important. Sometimes in the games when you have a really good relationship you don't have to talk because you already know the other person is going to do when they have the ball. It is very important to have good relationships with your team-mates." How much are you enjoying your football? “It is amazing. It's mind blowing really. Being here in the Manchester United first-team dressing room and stepping out at Old Trafford. I can't explain it really. It's just amazing. You see me smile when I score. It's out of this world." This is what you dreamed about... "Exactly, when I was doing it in the 16s, all the way up to the Academy, the youth team and now in the first team. It is just amazing really." What do you hope to achieve going forward? “I want to just put a landmark on the club and score as many goals as I possibly can. I want to win trophies at United, every young boy does coming up from the Academy, so it would be amazing to get one of them sometime soon."