Manchester United fans have been lamenting about how thinly stretched their frontline has been for quite a while now.
While much can be said about Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s tactics, the clinical edge isn’t all too prevalent in the Red Devils at the moment.
This lack of finishing has been attributed to several factors, the most prominent of which is perhaps the fact that both Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial were used to functioning as wide players.
When the Frenchman was injured, Rashford took his spot up-front but was frankly not too convincing in the role that Solskjaer has ear-marked him for.
The alternate option is to deploy 17-year-old Mason Greenwood. The teenager has shown tremendous promise in the recent past and the Norwegian himself indicated that Romelu Lukaku’s departure was left unbalanced solely to permit the academy graduate to grow within the squad.
However, this hasn’t been in incidence yet, with Solskjaer deploying him conservatively, often at the end of games with fewer than 10 minutes left on the clock. Further, the youngster almost never plays in his preferred spot when he does spend time on the pitch.
This criticism was echoed further when Greenwood was subbed in a recent game of the England U-21s against the Turkey U-21s.
The Lions were trailing 2-1 when Greenwood was subbed on in the 58th minute. By fulltime, Greenwood’s catalytic presence ensured that England won 2-3 in the U-21 European championships tie.
Mason Greenwood not looking out of place for @EnglandU21
— Carl Wallace (@Carl336699) September 6, 2019
These reactions indicate what the fans truly want to see at Old Trafford. Solskjaer has repeatedly stated that he is eager to give the youth a chance at United and further the ethos upon which the club has built their legacy.
However, in order to do so, he must also take complete risks with talents like Greenwood and Gomes and not make symbolic substitutions alone.