Cristiano Ronaldo is quite clearly no longer the future of Manchester United and two pundits think the club must shift its focus towards winger Alejandro Garnacho.
The 18-year-old has forced his way into Erik ten Hag’s starting eleven in recent weeks. He has repaid the Dutchman for his faith by registering two goals and two assists in his last four appearances.
Garnacho, who usually operates out on the left flank, helped Man Utd to snatch a last-gasp victory over Fulham at Craven Cottage on Sunday afternoon.
They took the lead in the 14th minute when Christian Eriksen finished at the back post following a swift attack and a clever Bruno Fernandes pass.
Man Utd were pegged back by former player Dan James in the second half, though. Fulham caught them out on the break and Tom Cairney played the ball across goal for James, who had a simple finish in the end.
It looked like Man Utd were going to drop points, but their in-form man Garnacho stepped up in stoppage time. He played an incisive one-two with Eriksen before finishing past Fulham goalkeeper Bernd Leno on his left foot.
Garnacho was several yards behind Bobby Decordova-Reid when Eriksen played the pass. But he showed stunning pace to get to the ball first and then score with a composed effort.
After his late winner, Garnacho pulled off the Lionel Messi shirt celebration to show he is here to stay. Unfortunately, his form hasn’t lasted long enough for him to make his way into the Argentina World Cup squad. The 18-year-old will definitely be a part of the national side in the future, though.
Alejandro Garnacho has ‘got a big future’
When asked about Garnacho on talkSPORT, iconic former Wycombe striker Adebayo Akinfenwa heaped praise on his electric speed.
“This kid, Decordova-Reid is not slow, where [Garnacho] came from to get in front of it and slot it, at 18, boy this boy’s got a big future,” Akinfenwa said.
Fellow talkSPORT pundit Darren Ambrose then labelled him ‘the next superstar’, with Ronaldo surely going to be replaced by Garnacho in the Man Utd attack.
“He is the next superstar, you’ve seen it,” Ambrose said. “I tongue-in-cheek joked about Fernandes and Ten Hag mentioning his attitude – he’s clearly doing something right now, because he’s reaping the rewards of what he’s doing in training, in the training ground, and he looks sensational.
“When he came on in the week against Aston Villa, he changed that game as well, changed the game today. They come back on December 27 I believe, Man United v Nottingham Forest, and all they remember is in our last game we beat Fulham 2-1.”
Both Fernandes and Ten Hag have spoken about Garnacho’s poor attitude in pre-season. It seems his mentality wasn’t up to scratch at that point, although the talent was definitely there.
Garnacho is now trying to become a model professional. This is exactly what he must do to ensure his talent doesn’t go to waste and that he can reach his full potential.
The teenage attacker has been making all the headlines. It is a shame, then, that Ronaldo has come in and stolen the limelight.
The Portuguese striker has slammed Ten Hag, Wayne Rooney and Man Utd as a whole during a bombshell interview with Piers Morgan.
Jamie Carragher has reacted to the interview by giving four reasons why Ronaldo is wrong, plus taking a swipe at some of his fellow pundits.