James Garner signs long-term contract with Manchester United after first-team breakthrough

James Garner has signed a long-term deal with Manchester United (Getty Images)

Manchester United youngster James Garner has been rewarded for his recent breakthrough into Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s squad by signing a long-term contract with the club until June 2022 with an optional year extension.

The 18-year-old midfielder was handed his first-team debut as a late substitute in last month’s 3-1 victory over Crystal Palace in the Premier League and was on the bench for the dramatic Champions League victory over PSG at the Parc Des Princes.

Speaking after the game against Palace, Solskjaer said: ‘I believe he’s got the chance to have a great future. He knows we believe in him.

‘We’ve got great faith in him as the next Michael Carrick. I know he’s young, I know it’s not fair on kids to compare to great players like Michael was, but he’s in the same mould.’

Juan Mata has also been impressed with his emergence, saying: ‘James, on top of being a great lad, is a great central midfielder who can pick his passes well and control the tempo of games – hopefully he has a huge career ahead of him.’

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Garner initially caught the eye under former United boss Jose Mourinho during the club’s pre-season tour of the United States and he has continued to impress since Solskjaer took the reigns in December.

Garner has been at the club since the age of eight and has been fast-tracked into the first-team squad along with fellow academy graduates Tahith Chong and Angel Gomes over the past couple of weeks due to numerous injuries to the first-team squad.

As well as catching the eye at United recently, Garner has also captained England’s Under-17 team.

More: Manchester United FC

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