Manchester United were able to win their first Europa League game of the season with a slim 1-0 win over FC Astana. After the game, the name on everyone’s mind has to have been that of Mason Greenwood.
The 17-year-old’s 73rd minute goal was special in more ways than one. In addition to being his first senior goal for the club, Greenwood also became the youngest goal scorer for United in Europe, ahead of Marcus Rashford and George Best.
His ascent from the academy to what many are hoping will be regular first team football is remarkable, to say the least.
A crucial reason behind the teenager’s rise has been the trust that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has placed in him.
Speaking about his performance after the game, Solskjaer said the following: “If you get him [Greenwood] inside the box you know something’s going to happen. Inside or outside and it was a great finish through the keeper’s legs”
Solskjaer goes on to add: “For sure it’s natural for him to play football, it’s natural for him to score goals, in and around the box he knows how to hit the ball. Maybe he hit it too hard in the first half — but he shows glimpses of what he can become.”
The United gaffer also commented on how it was a right choice for him to not sign a replacement after offloading Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez as it would give Greenwood more chances to play.
Lastly, Solskjaer also addresses the rumors that Greenwood was up for a bunker contract extension by stating: “Greenwood renewal? We’re always in talks with the boys about how we see the future and Mason’s one we want to keep with us.”
What fans will not be hoping is that Solskjaer risks him more often in the Premier League as well and in his preferred spot as a striker.