Alongside the likes of Barcelona, Benfica, Ajax, and Chelsea, among a few more names, Manchester United boast of one of the best youth academies in European football.
The Red Devils have constantly produced top-tier talent across the last several decades, and continue to hone and promote world beaters to their senior team.
David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Gary Neville, George Best, Bobby Charlton, and Ryan Giggs are just some of the biggest names that have graduated from the United academy.
And while ‘production’ has not been as successful in recent times, they still boast of a fair few successful stars in the team that have come through ‘Carrington’.
This list includes Marcus Rashford, Scott McTominay, Kobbie Mainoo, and perhaps one of the men of the moment, Alejandro Garnacho.
The Argentine teenager broke through United’s first team last season, scoring three goals in 19 appearances across the Premier League, but has etched his name into the starting lineup this season with 21 appearances already, scoring five goals and assisting two.
He is most recently coming off a superb display against West Ham at Old Trafford, where he scored a brace in a 3-0 win.
Speaking to YoSoyPlex in an interview recently, as relayed by Mundo Deportivo, Garnacho was asked to choose between Barcelona and Real Madrid.
“Real Madrid, simple,” he answered.
The Man United forward’s answer is barely surprising, though. He famously considers Cristiano Ronaldo as his idol and is seen mirroring his most famous celebrations following goals.
Not only that, but he was also at the centre of a debate last season after United bested Barcelona in the Europa League. Garnacho was pictured mocking Pedri’s celebration, for which he received a ton of backlash.
That said, there are currently no links between Madrid and Garnacho. In fact, los blancos are pursuing Kylian Mbappe, which would make it three left-wingers in the team already.
Ancelotti considering playing a makeshift centre-back pairing for Real Madrid against Valencia – report
Real Madrid will take on Valencia on Saturday, looking to maintain their solid lead at the top of the league table.
The Spanish giants are leading the standing with a six-point lead over Girona. A win against Valencia could help them solidify their position at the top while potentially opening up an opportunity to extend the lead to more than six points.
Heading into this game, though, Carlo Ancelotti is facing multiple setbacks, especially in the defensive unit, with Eder Militao, David Alaba and Thibaut Courtois still missing due to injuries.
This will once again put pressure on Ancelotti, as far as the team selection is concerned.
Rudiger & Tchouameni to partner at centre-back vs Valencia
Fortunately for the Real Madrid coach, much of his experimentations this season have worked, including Aurelien Tchouameni’s supreme performances at centre-back.
With that in mind, Diario AS reports Ancelotti is considering playing a makeshift central defensive pair against Valencia, comprising Antonio Rudiger and Tchouameni.
This is not the first time the young Frenchman will have to accompany Rudiger at centre-back. He did so earlier in the year when Real Madrid took on RCD Mallorca.
Interestingly, Real Madrid were able to retain a clean sheet, with Rudiger scoring the winning goal, in a narrow 1-0 victory.
What are Ancelotti’s other options?
Ancelotti will be hoping for a similar outcome this time around. However, it must be noted that the Italian will be boosted by the return of Dani Carvajal from suspension.
The veteran Spaniard can be an option at centre-back. But given the way how Tchouameni has impressed onlookers with his performances at centre-back, there is very little reason why he shouldn’t continue in the position.
Tchouameni has even been compared to Javier Mascherano by former Spanish coach Roberto Moreno.
Other than Carvajal, though, Nacho Fernandez is another option for Ancelotti. But the veteran defender is suffering with discomfort and Ancelotti has no plans to risk it.