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Omari Forson is next up.

La Carrington is cooking – Mainoo’s midfield partner is a creative freak with a telepathic brain

Manchester United’s academy is, once again, coming through with the goods. Kobbie Mainoo has been the latest revelation, but it’s his academy teammate who’s quietly making waves alongside him.

You can trace a long, unbroken line of brilliant footballers through its history, from Nobby Stiles and Bobby Charlton, to George Best, Mark ‘Sparky’ Hughes, the entire Class of ‘92, Gerard Piqué, Darren Fletcher, Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford – we could go on. It’s endless.

A couple of months ago, another one of those Carrington graduates, Alejandro Garnacho, scored one of the best overhead kicks we’ve ever seen – and if it doesn’t win Goal of the Season, we can’t wait to see the goal that beats it.

But now – if Garnacho wasn’t already enough – two fresh young ballers have arrived on the scene in the shape of Kobbie Mainoo and his new midfield partner Omari Forson.

Mainoo continues to excel and grabbed the headlines with a gorgeous game-winning goal curled into the bottom corner in the last agonising seconds of injury time against Wolves, but the assist was provided by his Carrington pal, Forson, who, along with Kobbie, has seemingly emerged from the dense fog of another bizarre United season to lead the way.

Born in West London, he came up through West Ham’s academy in East London, and spent a bit of time at Spurs’ academy in North London, before United saw his potential and snapped him up at the age of just fourteen.

He can play on either wing or through the middle – versatile – and, crucially, has the ability to glide past an opposition player with tremendous ease. Gold dust for a creative baller.

The Red Devills are having yet another post-Ferguson era season filled with controversy off the pitch, weirdness on the pitch and a general absence of identity and, seemingly, leadership (watch this space on the leadership vacuum, though—Lisandro Martinez is back from injury and he looks angry).

That all sounds grim, but in seasons like that at United, it often feels tailor-made for an academy prodigy to seize their chance in a faltering first team, and blow the grey clouds away.

Forson is now doing exactly that, with a string of performances that have won Erik ten Hag over and seen him quietly assume a regular first-team spot, culminating in his first Premier League assist for academy pal Mainoo.

But it’s not just the assist that tells his story. Forson has been balling out for a while and upon watching his youth team highlights, it becomes abundantly clear why Ten Hag already trusts him when the going gets tough for United. His reading of the game and ability to make attacks tick is phenomenal.

Bit of a joke really, isn’t it? F*ck La Masia – La Carrington seemingly cannot be stopped right now. And we don’t want it to, either.

Seriously, the kid is a wizard. He reads and finishes off attacking sequences before they’ve even played out. That’s freakish.

Mainoo has lit up the Premier League with his glittering performances at the base of midfield, stealing every single headline along the way and rightly so.

It’s Forson we’re keeping a close eye on now, though, and you should too. With such a natural ability to drift wide or float inside with the ball into tight spaces, intricately knitting together attacks or putting the gloss on them himself, he already looks a star at just 19.

Ten Hag has been keen to deploy him in wide areas, but that hasn’t stopped him and Mainoo from cooking up a storm in red.

United have a dynamic duo to hinge their hopes on once again. Mainoo is the truth, but Forson is following closely.

By Andrew Martin


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