Why Manchester United Should Keep Hold Of Veteran Ashley Young

Manchester United have got quite a few players nearing the end of their contracts.

While I understand why the Red Devils would want to prioritise top class talent like David de Gea, Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford when it comes down to renewing deals, I also believe they should be discussing a new contract with veteran versatile star Ashley Young.

Some players time at Old Trafford might have ran it’s course; I’m thinking Phil Jones, Antonio Valencia and Matteo Darmian. I honestly think Young deserves at least another year at the club.

The winger turned full-back always offers 100% when he wears a United jersey. He might be thirty-three years of age but some players use their experience to their advantage and I think Young is one of those players.

Only smart footballers can move positions towards the end of their careers. As a former winger, Ashley thinks like a winger when he’s defending. That means he has a fair idea what his opponent wants to do because it’s what he’d have done in the past. That allows Young to be aware positionally where to be when defending and where to run to when it comes to making challenges and interceptions.

Ashley Young has made fifteen Premier League appearances so far this term, predominantly as a full-back.

According to stats from Whoscored; he’s averaging 1.5 tackles per game, 1.9 interceptions, 2.1 clearances and he leads on crosses averaging a.3 per league appearance. He’s a defender known for his high concentration levels.

He gives his manager options, as Young can play on either flank and he could probably fill-in as a deep-laying playmaking holding midfielder if needed. He’s scored once this term and he’s also created two assists. He possess a great crossing ability and is good from set-pieces too.

The England international is also a player that gives the current squad a bridge going back to the successful days of Sir Alex Ferguson. His experience could be invaluable as United try and build for a successful future.

During the turbulent time at Old Trafford when Jose Mourinho was sacked as the manager to be replaced by interim boss Ole Gunnar Solsjkaer, it was Ashley who reminded the players via ManUtd.com what it means to play for United:

You go out there as a player and you want to win, play for the badge, play for this fantastic club, the best club in the world and for us now it’s about looking ahead and looking at the next couple of games we’ve got coming up.”

It’s a busy Christmas period and we want to get points on the board and start getting ourselves back up the table.”

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t think Ashley Young should get a longterm contract keeping him at The Red Devils for another five years. Nor do I believe he should be an automatic first choice ahead of younger talent like Luke Shaw or Diogo Dalot.

I just believe Young still has enough in the engine to be a superb squad player and a mentor for the younger lads at Old Trafford.

The Mirror have linked the full-back with a move to Serie A giants Inter Milan, that shows you that he’s still well thought of. Manchester United should be doing their upmost to keep such an experienced pro at their club, in my opinion.


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