Ashley Young has struggled to make an impact since Jose Mourinho was appointed as the new Manchester United manager last summer and it wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see the winger push for a move away from Old Trafford before the end of the transfer window.
Young, who joined United from Aston Villa for a reported fee of £16 million in 2011, has racked up just 235 minutes of Premier League football this season – a disappointing run considering his improved effort in the 2015/16 campaign. In fact, the 31-year-old has featured just three times since starting in United’s 0-0 draw against Liverpool at Anfield in October; and two of those were in cup competitions.
The Red Devils are on the verge of something special under Mourinho and the likes of Young, Chris Smalling and Luke Shaw will all need to work hard to break into the starting line-up. United are unbeaten in 16 fixtures in all competitions and the Portuguese won’t want to tweak his side too much as the business end of the season approaches.
However, Young might be happy to remain at Old Trafford as a ‘bit part’ player for the rest of the season. The Red Devils are looking to challenge for silverware on multiple fronts in the coming months and the winger might get a chance to feature regularly for United in both the Europa League and FA Cup competitions.
Mourinho’s men are 90 minutes away from an EFL Cup final at Wembley and Young may be set to play a key role for United in the second leg. At the time of writing, the Red Devils have a two goal advantage over top flight strugglers Hull City but Mourinho won’t want his side to get complacent as the prospect of a League Cup final looms large.
When it comes to the Premier League title race, United are in fine form and Young could yet be useful if Mourinho needs an experienced head at the end of the campaign. The Reds, priced at 18/1 for the title in bet365 Premier League betting odds, have won six of their last seven top flight encounters and the 31-year-old will be desperate to break back into the starting line-up.
Young has made just nine appearances for United this year but the Red Devils winger appears comfortable with his current situation at Old Trafford. Nobody wants to sit on the bench but his decision to bide time might be worth it if the Portuguese turns to him in the next few weeks. When needed, Young has already shown his reliability under Mourinho and he is one of the more consistent options on the cusp of first team action.
The England star has been a faithful servant during his brief United career and it would be harsh to suggest that Young’s days are numbered. He hasn’t enjoyed the most successful of spells this season but he still has plenty to give and it wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see Ashley Young play a key role for United in the remainder of the campaign.