Luke Shaw is losing the battle to save his crisis-hit Manchester United career.
Despite being fully fit, Shaw was not included in the match-day squad for 4-0 FA Cup win over Reading. The youngster hasn’t featured for the Red Devils since November.
Once expected to become a world-class defender, Luke Shaw has failed to impress new boss Jose Mourinho. He is now the fourth-choice left back, behind Daley Blind, Marcos Rojo, and Matteo Darmian.
Shaw joined Manchester United for £30 million in 2014 as a teenager from Southampton. This made him the most expensive teenage footballer in the world then, and he seemed destined to embrace the big stage, winning the Golden Boy award the same year, and brushing aside then manager Louis Van Gaal’s doubts over his fitness.
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He had started every league game of the 15-16 season until mid-September, putting in performances that made him a fan favourite. This run was horrifically cut short during a Champions League game, when PSV’s Moreno caught him with a sliding tackle that caused a double fracture.
Shaw made a comeback, starting in this season’s Community Shield win and Mourinho’s first Premier League game as Old Trafford boss. But he has lost the gaffer’s trust since, starting only 5 more times.
Shaw was particularly blamed by Jose for a key goal in a 3-1 loss to Watford and subbed off immediately. His standing with the boss has taken a nosedive since, with Mourinho even publicly questioning his commitment.
Luke Shaw will now face a trying 5 months to prove his worth, as Mourinho looks to assess his options during the summer transfer window. With him being almost certainly out of the squad for Liverpool’s visit to Old Trafford, it remains to be seen when he can force his way back into the Portuguese’s plans.