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Man United youngster labelled ‘captain material’ and compared to Roy Keane by former coach



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Manchester United’s academy continues to produce impressive talents year in, and year out despite the first-team performance drop-off in recent years.

Alejandro Garnacho and Kobbie Mainoo have been the latest to emerge into the first team and impress manager Erik ten Hag.

Another youngster who earned his first-team debut recently was Dan Gore, who appeared from the bench during United’s 3-0 win over Crystal Palace in the Carabao Cup.

Gore was delighted to make his debut, which landed on his 19th birthday, and it was deserved after training with the first team squad for a number of months beforehand.

The midfielder joined Old Trafford from Burnley in the summer of 2021 and has since risen through the academy setup at Carrington. He won the under-21s Player of the Season last term.

Gore’s former coach Lewis Craig spoke to the Manchester Evening News about the talented midfielder and compared him to United legend Roy Keane and stated that he has something different to other academy talents.

“He’s captain material, I’d say,” Craig said. “Almost like your old-school Roy Keane type with hard challenges, but he’s got unbelievable quality on the ball because he was a forward in the past as well.

“In that Under-21 group at United, there have been the likes of Shola Shoretire and Isak Hasen-Aaroen, but it seems like there’s been something missing in them, which doesn’t seem to be the case with Dan.

“If you leave him in an environment long enough he thrives and I think it’s fair to say that Dan wasn’t a Burnley type of player, in the sense that he was probably beyond Burnley in terms of his ability.

“He would have played for Burnley’s first-team if he was still there and Sean Dyche would have been all over him, but there was always an acceptance of Dan was Salford, Man United and there were murmurings going on in the background. 

“Kids get poached in academies all the time, but I think Burnley got looked after with the deal when he did go over. And I think he was given certain guarantees because United knew the talent they were getting.”

The Manchester Evening News added that the experienced duo of Bruno Fernandes and Jonny Evans have each taken hands-on roles in helping Gore with his development.

He has appeared on the bench for the first-team eight times so far this term, coming off the bench once for his debut, and regularly captains the academy teams which he plays for.