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Old 14-05-2016, 02:39 PM   #75
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Default Re: The Future of Manchester United Academy Graduated under Louis van Gaal.

Rashford & co get Premier League awards

Four Manchester United Academy graduates who have made the step up to first-team action in the Barclays Premier League this season have been recognised for their achievements.

Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, Donald Love, Marcus Rashford and James Weir all received special awards on Friday to mark their progression from playing in the club's Academy teams to making their league debuts at senior level.

Borthwick-Jackson was the first of the group to make his bow, as as substitute for Marcos Rojo in the 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion at Old Trafford last November, while Donald Love followed suit in February when he replaced Matteo Darmian in the defeat at Sunderland.

Rashford, of course, grabbed the headlines on his Barclays Premier League debut when he netted twice in the 3-2 triumph over Arsenal, three days after marking his first senior appearance with two goals in the Europa League win against Midtjylland.

Under-21s captain Weir also made his first league appearance against the Gunners, coming on as a late substitute for the Reds' other goalscorer Ander Herrera.

To mark their achievements, the four young Reds each received an award from United's Head of Academy, Nicky Butt, and former Reds defender Chris Casper who is now a club support manager for the Premier League. The two ex-players came through the United ranks together, from youth team to first team, and Butt spoke to ManUtd.com about his pride at seeing the latest crop follow in their footsteps.

"It's been brilliant to see so many young lads given their chance in the first team this season," Butt enthused.

"The club has always prided itself on nurturing and developing youngsters with the main aim to get them into the first team. It's a fantastic feeling when you step out for your first Premier League game. All the lads have shown they have the talent and the right attitude to do well and hopefully there will be many more opportunities for them."

CAMERON BORTHWICK-JACKSON


Premier League debut: 7 Nov 2015 v West Brom (H)
2015/16 appearances and goals: 8 (5) | 0

Borthwick-Jackson said: "It was a real thrill to make my United debut, especially at Old Trafford, and a dream come true. I didn't feel nervous when I came on, thatís just my character to get on with the game and I was just focused on doing my best and helping the team win which we did. Being involved with the first team this season has been an incredible experience and I hope I can build on my performances and continue to improve."

DONALD LOVE


Premier League debut: 13 Feb 2016 v Sunderland (A)
2015/16 appearances and goals: 1 (1) | 0

Love commented: "It was a real buzz to get the call from the manager to come on when Matteo Darmian unfortunately got injured at Sunderland. I just wanted to go out there and do my best and while it was really disappointing to lose the game, I learned a lot from the experience and I hope there will be more to come in the future."

MARCUS RASHFORD


Premier League debut: 28 Feb 2016 v Arsenal (H)
2015/16 appearances and goals: 16 | 7

Rashford recalled: "I'll never forget my Premier League debut - it felt like a dream and came so soon after my debut against Midtjylland. To score twice against Arsenal was a fantastic feeling and most importantly it helped us win a very important match. I am loving every minute of being involved in the first team and it means a lot to me coming from Manchester. I have learned so much already, but I know I must keep working hard and doing my best for the team."

JAMES WEIR


Premier League debut: 28 Feb 2016 v Arsenal (H)
2015/16 appearances and goals: 0 (1) | 0

Weir enthused: "I was really proud to come on in the last few minutes of a huge game for us against Arsenal. Marcus had obviously scored two brilliant goals and I was pleased to play a small part in helping us pick up an important three points."

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