“Erik Ten Hag couldn’t even wait to announce the young because of how talented he is, Even more talented than Kobbie Mainoo and he is looking forward to play our next Match”-Manchester United have found their next Paul Pogba in the academy

Manchester United Young star Kobbie Mainoo is making exceptional progress and he’s already been likened to Paul Pogba.

Making comparisons between established and young players is often not helpful but it’s inevitable. Kobbie Mainoo has been likened to Paul Pogba and his performance for Manchester United’s Under-21s against Salford City in October intensified the comparisons.

Mainoo recorded two assists and he sprayed some beautiful passes under the floodlights. His movement was reminiscent of Pogba’s and the MEN’s match report from that game said: “The midfielder has outgrown academy football and his talent is needed in the first-team.”Mainoo was carefully handled after his return from injury and he featured for the U21s in a handful of games, but it was only a matter of time before Erik ten Hag gave him opportunities.

The 18-year-old has been exceptional since breaking into the first-team this season and he’s now one of the first names on the team sheet, which is the ultimate compliment.Speaking last year shortly after his senior debut, someone who is close to Mainoo confidently said he would play for England and he now has an outside chance of making the Three Lions squad for this summer’s European Championship after making just 12 appearances for United.His progress has been remarkable and he possesses all the attributes to become a world-class talent, just like Pogba did when emerging from the club’s academy in the late 2000s.Pogba left on a free transfer to join Juventus in the summer of 2012 after failing to agree a new contract when it might have been advisable to build a team around him.

The Frenchman returned to Old Trafford in 2016 but his second stint wasn’t a success and supporters do not remember his time in a red shirt fondly. There is no chance of Mainoo leaving on a free transfer but there is a feeling that the team should be built around him.United have developed another special talent and he has the temperament and talent to succeed. Mainoo is understood to be quiet, likeable and kept well-grounded by his parents.

There were character issues with Pogba during his time at United and such problems with Mainoo seem highly unlikely to happen. He has the talent to eclipse Pogba’s legacy in Manchester and comparisons between himself and Frenkie de Jong have also been merited.Mainoo has operated as a deep-lying midfielder in the majority of his senior appearances, but those who know him best have suggested his long-term future will be as a No.8.Adding goals to his game has been privately identified as an area for improvement and his two goals in two games against Newport County and Wolves show he’s progressing.Mainoo’s matchwinner at Molineux gets better every time you watch it.

It was a moment of individual brilliance and Rasmus Hojlund described him as a ‘generational talent’ after the game.Erik ten Hag also gave him a glowing assessment. “I think very quickly I saw him,” Ten Hag said. “I think last autumn I saw him for the first time and at that moment I thought he was playing a little bit too comfortable. I saw him playing in the U21s, he should be much more dominant.”We pushed him a lot on that side, by pushing him in the training and you see he makes such good progress and he is almost progressing from game to game.”And of course, it’s wonderful to see and I hope he stays calm like he is, as he did with his goal as well.

He is determined, he is a good character and I hope he keeps going with this progress.”In a separate interview with MUTV, Ten Hag added: “What he did was great, no doubt about that. He’s a calm person and it looks like he grows from game to game, so hopefully he keeps this going.”I will push and support him, but he has to do it. He has great abilities and in the future, he can be a great player. Today, we have seen it, but also in the last couple of games.”Ten Hag has a strong record of developing talent and Mainoo is at the right place to take his game to another level.”I will push and support him, but he has t

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