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Manchester United could make shock left-back decision after Alvaro Fernandez return ruled out



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Manchester United are without a recognisable first-team left-back, and many supporters have called for Alvaro Fernandez to be recalled from his loan spell.

Luke Shaw has faced another setback and looks like he will be unavailable for the rest of the season, whilst Tyrell Malacia’s return date is still unknown.

United activated the break clause in Sergio Reguilon’s loan contract last month and will be wishing that the Spaniard was still at the club now.

Diogo Dalot cannot simply be moved across to the left because he is the only fit right-back. Erik ten Hag needs to think creatively in order to plug that hole.

Many fans have suggested that recalling Fernandez from his loan at Benfica could be the right move. He has started just two games since joining the Portuguese side on loan and has a clause in the contract that they will have an obligation to buy him if he starts more than 50 per cent of games until the end of the season.

However, it has been clarified that even if United had the option, Fernandez can’t be recalled because he has already played for two clubs this season and would not be allowed to feature for a third.

He spent the first half of the season on loan in La Liga for Granada, where Hannibal Mejrbi is right now.

The other fan-led option is to promote 16-year-old Harry Amass, who has trained with the first team in recent weeks. That is an unlikely scenario, considering that Amass has not even played U21 football.

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Instead, there are two potential shock options that Ten Hag could go for that both make more sense.

Firstly could be the return of Brandon Williams, who is on loan at Ipswich Town. He has previously started for the club at left-back.

However, the academy graduate’s return would require an agreement between both clubs and a special dispensation from the EFL. The Manchester Evening News has reported that this is unlikely to be granted, even if they explored it.

Another option is using Willy Kambwala in the wide areas, either on the right or left, with Dalot covering the other side.

The teenager has the athleticism to deal with wingers better than both Victor Lindelöf and Sofyan Amrabat whilst also having played at right-back at times in the academy.

It will be a challenge for United to deal with these problems until the likes of Wan-Bissaka and Malacia return to the fold.