Scott McTominay is loved by Manchester United legends Gary Neville and Roy Keane as Rio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to build around him January 17, 2021 – Posted in: Soccer

Scott McTominay is one of the unsung heroes of the Manchester United team that perhaps deserves a little more credit.

The club are flying in the Premier League and go into the Liverpool game at Anfield top of the table – it’s the first time they have gone into a game against their rivals in first place since 2013.

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Scott McTominay has played 106 times for Manchester United

Bruno Fernandes has rightly taken plenty of plaudits for his incredible amount of goals and assists since joining in January 2020.

But it is McTominay who has really stepped to the fore over the last few weeks to become a real rock for manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

He has stepped in with valuable goals and has been a dependable presence in the centre of midfield.

When Man United haven’t been doing well it is usually the 24-year-old and his usual partner Fred who comes in for their fair share of criticism.

It is only right the Scotland international be given an equal amount of praise when he does well.

There’s a reason why Sir Alex Ferguson and Jose Mourinho love McTominay and now he’s delivering on a regular basis for the Red Devils.

McTominay scored the winner for United in the FA Cup against Watford

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McTominay scored the winner for United in the FA Cup against Watford

He was coming through the club’s academy while Fergie was manager and went on to make his debut under Mourinho.

Back in 2018, video footage emerged of Sir Alex appearing to tell the then-United boss that he should be picking McTominay on a regular basis.

Even after he left the Manchester club, Mourinho has been quick to praise his ex-player calling him their best player back in 2019.

McTominay also revealed last year how the pair still keep in touch.

There is something about the Scotland star that legends of the club just love.

He gives his all on the pitch, the minimum requirement from a United player, but he is now starting to give game-defining performances on the pitch.

He scored two quick goals against Leeds to set off their brilliant 6-2 win over Marcelo Bielsa’s side back in December.

Scott McTominay still speaks to Jose Mourinho


Scott McTominay still speaks to Jose Mourinho

Gary Neville was on commentary and was full of praise for the midfielder.

Neville declared: “Scott McTominay has turned into Paul Scholes and Roy Keane inside the first three minutes.”

Later in the game, the former United defender and leading pundit added: “He is emerging and growing.

“He’s someone Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] can rely upon in the big games with Fred and Fernandes in front of them. Then Pogba, Matic and Van de Beek fit in around that.”

United icon Roy Keane was also working as a pundit for the game and heaped praise on McTominay too – saying he even likes his haircut!

“He’s 24, he’s mature, he’s in good shape and he’s played a lot of games at the top level” said the former Red Devils captain.

“He’s played in one or two different roles as well as for the national team.

“I even like his haircut. His haircut makes him look a little bit sharper.

McTominay has scored three goals in his last six games

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McTominay has scored three goals in his last six games

“It was a nice day for him. It’s a big pitch and Leeds were going man for man. We see a lot of teams and it’s about possession and tippy, tappy football, but as a midfielder, if there is space in front of you, just run. Football is a running game and we saw that today – it was a perfect game for him, plenty of space.

“The kid has matured very well. I do like the look of him. He’ll probably need to improve on his stats and goals, but his role in the team has generally been protecting a back four that is dodgy.”

In United’s FA Cup clash with Watford, McTominay, who was also captain, scored the winning goal after five minutes and it was the turn of another United legend to sing his praises.

Rio Ferdinand told BT Sport: ”You can see in the way he conducts himself but more importantly how he plays out on the pitch, he’s whole hearted, he covers the ground well, he takes responsibility in situations.

“You need all that as a captain. You need somebody who people can look to and say, ‘That’s someone I’d like to follow.’

“He’s got them sort of traits. He’s a young lad still but he’s been at the club since he was five years old so he knows the fabric and what it means to be a Man United player.

“He attacks the header really well, it’s two movements to get the end of this, there’s a lot of thinking behind it. There’s also a desire to get on the end of things.

“He has the credentials I think to be a mainstay in this team and be a real important member of this team for years, years and years to come because of how he applies himself.

“It’s not just your football ability sometimes. There’s more to it than that. Your mental capacity to take things on board but also the ability to go out there and accept responsibility and be the man that people look to for that inspiration.

McTominay is set to head to Euro 2020 with Scotland too

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McTominay is set to head to Euro 2020 with Scotland too

“He seems to doing that more and more, week-in, week-out. I think it’s the level of consistency [he needs to improve]. As a young player you’re always going to see glimpses of it but with him it’s about continuing this. He’s in a good vein of form at the moment.

“He’s almost certainly now become one of the main players in that midfield area, I’d say. He’s one I think that Ole can build around in that respect.”

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