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Man Utd coach names Teden Mengi as the next youngster to break into first-team



Mengi is a defender (Picture: Getty)

Teden Mengi will be the next youth star to break into the Manchester United senior squad, according to Under 23’s coach Neil Wood.

The centre-back has gone from strength to strength in the academy ranks this season and captained the Under 18’s in the FA Youth Cup semi-finals.

Mengi has only just turned 18 and Wood is convinced he can emulate what Brandon Williams has done this season.

‘Teden has been fantastic,’ Wood told MEN Sport.

‘He came up to us quite early on in the season and, a bit like Brandon in a sense, he came from the 18s and took his chance.

‘He played really well and he kept his place in the team.

‘And when he dropped back down at the end of the season to lead the Youth Cup team, he put in some excellent performances there.

Williams has managed to nail down a spot in the senior squad (Picture: Getty)

‘We’ll be looking to work with him next season and he’s one [player] we want to ‘do a Brandon’ with, push him on and the goal is to try and get him pushed up into that first team if we can.’

Williams was aiming to solidify a place in the Under 23’s squad this season before catching the eye of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The 19-year-old was promoted to the first team and is now battling Luke Shaw for United’s left-back spot.

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Solskjaer has made a habit of welcoming academy stars into the senior ranks since taking charge and after Mason Greenwood, Tahith Chong and Williams made the leap this season, Wood expects even more youngsters to do the same this year.

‘That’s what the Under-23s is for, we’re trying to get that jump up to the first team,’ he explained.

‘And like Brandon, once that chance comes we want them to take it.

Mengi is waiting to make his first-team debut (Picture: Getty)

‘Brandon has done exactly that: he started with the 23s, coming on pre-season with us, he was excellent.

‘He came in flying on the first day of pre-season, you could see the determination he had, he came back in great shape and he was working the hardest of the group. He’s got his rewards now.

‘He’s got his chance in the first team, did really well and he’s not looked back since.

‘It just shows you how you can start off the season in one place and by the end of it, he’s flying up there in the first team.’

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