Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has said he expects to give more chances to academy stars to join the first-team squad after the recent impressive performances of Jesse Lingard. The Dutch manager handed the versatile winger, James Wilson and Andreas Pereira a starting role in the Capital One Cup game against Middlesbrough on Wednesday (28 October) and despite United's elimination Van Gaal is prepared to continue with his philosophy.
Van Gaal has been credited during his long successful career with fostering new talent, having handed debuts to the likes of Andres Iniesta and Xavi Hernandez at Barcelona and winning a Champions League crown with a youthful Ajax. He has replicated that method at Old Trafford since his arrival to the club in the summer of 2014 by giving a first-team chance to not only Jesse Lingard himself, but also Paddy McNair, Tyler Blackett and Andreas Pereira.
Lingard, who made his debut in Van Gaal's first Premier League game against Swansea last season, started recently in the Champions League draw against CSKA Moscow. He made a great impact during the derby game against Manchester City coming from the bench in the second half of the game.
"It has always been part of my own philosophy and that of the club to give opportunities to youth players," he wrote in his column for United Review. "Jesse Lingard is one of those players who was given a chance to play in the last three matches and he has taken that opportunity to show what he is capable of and to prove that he deserves to be a member of the first-team squad.
"I have been delighted with the progress that he continues to make, along with Andreas Pereira, who played against Ipswich Town and scored his first senior competitive goal. With advice from Ryan Giggs and Nicky Butt, I regularly invite members of the development squad to train alongside the first team. It gives them a chance to step up their training and to improve their technical ability."
Van Gaal, meanwhile, also names the example of McNair, who is currently injured, but last season secured 16 Premier League appearances under his belt.
"A good example would be Paddy McNair. He trained a number of times with the first team, which helped him prepare physically and mentally, so that it wasn't such a big step when he was called upon to the first team."