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Man United loanee admits he’s “failed” at his club, making public apology



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Credit: Hibs TV

Hibernian centre-back and Manchester United loanee Will Fish admits he’s “failed” this season as his two-year loan approaches its end.

United have struggled defensively this season, conceding, on average, the most shots per 90 minutes in the Premier League. Part of this is because of the issues and inconsistency in front of André Onana in central defence.

Erik ten Hag’s side has been cursed with injuries this season, Antony’s absence against Bournemouth was the club’s 57th injury so far, and with Lisandro Martínez being sidelined for extended periods throughout this year and Harry Maguire, Raphaël Varane looking likely to leave Old Trafford the defence is sparse.

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Due to senior players being out, academy graduates have had the chance to break through to the first team, and the likes of Kobbie Mainoo and Willy Kambwala have shown brightly in a bleak season.

Kambwala has slotted into the back line and, despite being just 19 years old, doesn’t look out of place. Will Fish, a fellow Carrington product, is hoping to join the young Frenchman.

Fish, 21, has spent the last two years on loan at Scottish Premiership side Hibernian with mixed results. Picking up regular minutes under Hibs manager Nick Montgomery, the young defender has become a key player for the team based in Edinburgh.

However, 2024 has been rough for both the player and the club, as they have only won three league games since the turn of the year. With the loan coming to an end, Fish is unsure what will happen next.

“I haven’t really given it much thought, to be honest,” Fish told footballscotland. “I take it step by step, and whatever happens in the summer, I don’t know. But I’ve loved every minute of playing for Hibs.”

The 21-year-old issued an apology for the team’s recent form and took the majority of the blame, going on to say: “My focus this season was here and do the best I can for the club. But I feel like I’ve failed because the team is now in the bottom six. I’ve played in a lot of those games, but no one out there ever gives less than 100%.

“We’ve had a few things go against us and sloppy moments like this one in the last minute have cost us. I’d never say it’s down to lack of effort or training, but that’s football, and it hurts. I’ve focused on this season, and this season only, for now.”

Similar to his parent club Fish has aspirations of playing in Europe, having got a taste for it last season.

“Results have gone against us, though, and it’s not worked out. We want to be third and we want to be playing in Europe. We’ve had some great days and away days in Europe which will stick with me forever. That’s where this club should be, and the players can only apologise for not achieving that this year.”

The two years up in Scotland seem to have done Will Fish wonders; regular first-team football in his boots, along with being a relied-upon sentinel at the back, has allowed him to develop the maturity to take responsibility at such a young age.

With the future of the Manchester United defence uncertain, Fish could be a good addition to the squad. At the very least, he could benefit the club’s Financial Fair Play situation as being from the academy. If sold, he would count as 100% profit.