Paddy McNair impresses on return to Manchester United first-team

by Sam Peoples

Paddy McNair was thrown straight back into the deep end by Louis van Gaal in the Chelsea game this weekend and he swam magnificently.

Up against a powerful Chelsea side, the 19-year-old really impressed and Didier Drogba posed very little threat to Manchester United on the day. More than that, his confidence with the ball at his feet was fantastic and that’s something which would have really pleased Louis van Gaal.

It’s not the first time this season where McNair has been called on during an injury crisis and delivered. He made his debut in testing circumstances at home to West Ham and followed up what was a very assured debut with a brilliant performance to keep Romelu Lukaku quiet in the Everton game.

McNair’s performance against Chelsea is all the more impressive when you consider he had to mentally cope with the disappointment of being hauled off away at Arsenal and Southampton after playing so poorly. Instead of letting it get him down, McNair clearly took the lessons on board and helped them to improve himself, something not every 19-year-old would do.

Back in February, McNair signed a new deal with Man United which was as big an indication as he could get that van Gaal had belief in his future at the club.

It’s very early doors for McNair at United but the early signs are good. He’s dealt with the positives and negatives in equal measure and what he showed at Stamford Bridge at the weekend was that he has matured as a player over the course of the year which is all he can do at this stage.

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