Nearly a 12 months has handed since Cristiano Ronaldo pressed self-destruct on his Manchester United profession, strolling away from Outdated Trafford to change into the face of Saudi Arabia’s soccer revolution. However the iconic No 7’s affect has been solid in Erik ten Hag’s dressing room by means of one in every of his brightest younger gamers.
Alejandro Garnacho has skilled issues on a soccer pitch most gamers have ended their careers nonetheless dreaming of.
Aged 19, he has gained silverware with Manchester United at Wembley Stadium and represented his nation alongside arguably the best to ever do it, Lionel Messi.
However regardless of his compatriot’s lofty standing, Cristiano Ronaldo – who admittedly sits in the identical dialog – is the determine Garnacho seemingly idolises essentially the most within the early phases of his profession.
Garnacho broke into Ten Hag’s senior set-up on a full-time foundation final season however was coaching alongside Ronaldo even earlier after the 38-year-old’s memorable 2021 return.
And his impression seems to have stayed with Garnacho past his second stint at United, often that includes on the thrilling winger’s social media.
The Purple Devils No 17 has been noticed sporting Ronaldo’s Al Nassr shirt in a single video and has often talked about him in posts and tales on his Instagram.
Garnacho’s tributes have prolonged onto the pitch, too, most not too long ago after his first purpose of the season towards Crystal Palace on Tuesday.
He opened the scoring within the first half, sending United on their solution to a snug 3-0 win at Outdated Trafford to e-book a spot within the Carabao Cup fourth spherical.
And in jubilation after his strike, Garnacho wheeled away in direction of Outdated Trafford’s north-south quadrant, pointing at himself and the ground, paying homage to the build-up to Ronaldo’s notorious ‘Siu’ celebration.
He opted for an air punch slightly than the Portuguese nice’s ending transfer, however the affect the latter has on his profession stays clear as day.
Garnacho was extensively tipped to inherit the No 7 shirt this season after it was vacant since Ronaldo’s explosive departure final November.
However Ten Hag as an alternative supplied it to £60million signing Mason Mount, a shocking successor to many given the quantity has historically been donned by wingers at United.
Garnacho has upgraded from the No 49 to the following smartest thing, 17, as he continues his growth below Ten Hag’s regime.
He earned simply his third begin of the season within the Palace triumph however impressed and is in rivalry to maintain his place for Saturday’s rematch within the Premier League.