Man Utd’s biggest stars and flops from the 2011 FA Youth Cup

Manchester United is historically known for being home to some of England’s greatest footballing talents.

The class of 1992 undoubtedly set the bar high by becoming one of the club’s most iconic players of all time, but the Old Trafford side have had their fair share of young talent since.

Among these were the stars of the Red Devils’ famous FA Youth Cup final in 2011. The team cruised through Sheffield United to claim a 6-3 victory, with several of its key members representing the senior side and even becoming family. names.

More than 63,000 fans were at Old Trafford on Wednesday night to cheer on their side as Alejandro Garnacho scored in a 3-1 win over Nottingham Forest in the same competition final more than a decade after the famous triumph .

But history shows that not all prospects will achieve the same levels of success.

Star Daily Sport takes a look at some of the biggest stars and flops of United’s 2011 Youth Cup-winning side and where they stand now.

Sam Johnson

Sam Johnstone has impressed since moving to West Brom

The 29-year-old goalkeeper spent seven long years struggling to break into the first team following their Youth Cup success. Johnstone was sent out on countless loans, never making an appearance for United’s first team.

Eventually he made the brave decision to leave the comfort of the nest and sign for newly relegated West Brom in 2018. And the 6ft 4in shot-stopper has since proven that life exists beyond United, having impressed enough to receive multiple calls. to the England team by Gareth Southgate.

Sean McGinty

McGinty was signed as a youngster from Charlton before showing his versatility in Youth Cup success. But after failing to make an impression on loan in the lower leagues, he rose through the footballing ranks, joining Sheffield United in 2013 and then Rochdale in 2014.

The 6ft 5in defender now plays for Ayr United in Scottish football’s Second Division, having signed a two-year contract in 2021.

Michael Kean

Michael Keane is an Everton regular in the Premier League
Michael Keane is an Everton regular in the Premier League

Keane left United in 2015 to join Burnley, for whom he had played on loan the previous season. He is another success story despite just one league appearance for the Old Trafford club.

The centre-back earned a move to Everton in 2017 where he made just under 200 appearances. His consistency in the starting lineup made him another former United academy lad to go on and represent the Three Lions, having received 12 caps.

Tom Thorpe

Centre-back Thorpe led United’s exuberant side to victory on that historic night in 2011. Yet he only made one senior appearance before being released.

He spent time at Bolton and last played for ATK in the Indian Super League in the 2017/18 season. Thorpe is currently a free agent despite showing big promises at United.

Michele Fornasier

Man United were on the wrong side of an official complaint by Fiorentina to FIFA over the Italian’s move to England in 2009. Fortunately, no action was taken by the governing body.

Unfortunately, winning the FA Youth Cup was the highlight of Fornasier’s United career and he was sent to Sampdoria two years later. After spells at Pescara and Parma, the 28-year-old central defender now plays in Serie C for Monopoli.

jesse lingard

Jesse Lingard is an academic achievement
Jesse Lingard is an academic achievement

One of the Red Devils’ academy golden boys, Lingard burst onto the scene in the 2015/16 season under Louis van Gaal. He quickly racked up first-team appearances and thrived under Jose Mourinho, scoring 13 goals under the Portuguese icon.

Lingard eventually fell out of favor under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer before resurrecting his career last season with a successful loan spell at West Ham. After once again being shunned this campaign, the Englishman is finally ready for a permanent departure from Old Trafford this summer.

Paul Pogba

Paul Pogba is one of the biggest stars in world football
Paul Pogba is one of the biggest stars in world football

Midfield maestro Pogba was always destined for stardom but left Man United for Juventus in 2012, where he became one of the game’s most promising talents. the Premier League giants to bring him back in 2016 for a club-record fee.

But despite winning the World Cup and becoming one of the biggest stars in world football, Pogba’s career at United leaves a lot to be desired. And the Frenchman will likely join his old friend Lingard in leaving Old Trafford at the end of the season once his contract expires.

Ravel Morisson

Ravel Morrison currently plays for Derby County in the Championship
Ravel Morrison currently plays for Derby County in the Championship

Morrison is one of the greatest “what ifs” in modern English football. The ultra-talented midfielder’s attitude and controversies off the pitch have deprived the world of one of its potentially most gifted stars.

After years of traveling through the English leagues, across Lazio and even Sweden, Morrison finally seems to have found a home under Wayne Rooney in Derby County. He has made 36 league appearances for the Rams this season, scoring four times as they seek to achieve the impossible by avoiding relegation.

Ryan Tunnicliffe

The Portsmouth man was once Pogba’s midfield partner. But the similarities end there in terms of career trajectories.

Tunnicliffe played for Fulham, Wigan, Millwall and Luton.

Does Keane

Will Keane scores goals for Wigan
Will Keane scores goals for Wigan

Michael Keane’s twin brother was tasked with scoring goals rather than denying them in their Youth Cup success. He stayed at the club until 2016, after being loaned out to a range of lower league sides.

Eventually he settled in Hull and Ipswich, before really finding his feet at Wigan Athletic. The 29-year-old scored 36 goals in 80 appearances for the Latics and was crucial in their Ligue 1 victory this season.

Gyliano van Velzen

Signed as a bright prospect, he won the Youth Cup soon after arriving.

He left for Royal Antwerp in 2012/13 and then spent years in Holland, playing for Erik ten Hag’s former club FC Utrecht. He returned to England in 2019 with Crawley and Aldershot but is now with Telstar in Holland.

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