Derby - United u23

SmashedHombre

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Shoretire, Elanga, Hannibal and Forson just make football look incredibly easy. Hannibal in particular just feels like a potential superstar in the making, he plays the game at his own pace which I always feel is the mark of a great midfielder, it's a quality I think he shares with Hansen and Garner. We're often accused of being blinkered about how good our youth players are, but it's hard not to get excited considering the performance levels we've seen this season.

Our defending all season has been hilarious, not sure what the cause of it is but we've had a lot of brainfarts this year.
It's been the same in the academy games. Honestly, the U18s and U23s this season have been fantastic entertainment. They've all taken the 'Attack! Attack! Attack!' chant and just run with it.
 

Adnan

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Shoretire, Elanga, Hannibal and Forson just make football look incredibly easy. Hannibal in particular just feels like a potential superstar in the making, he plays the game at his own pace which I always feel is the mark of a great midfielder, it's a quality I think he shares with Hansen and Garner. We're often accused of being blinkered about how good our youth players are, but it's hard not to get excited considering the performance levels we've seen this season.

Our defending all season has been hilarious, not sure what the cause of it is but we've had a lot of brainfarts this year.
Completely agree mate. What's even more impressive about Hannibal is that he's being man marked by the opposition regularly now which is a huge compliment to his talent and ability.
 

mancsarered

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Really enjoy watching these u23's play football. I don't expect this group of defenders to break into the first team, but the attacking play is brilliant.
 

mazhar13

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Completely agree mate. What's even more impressive about Hannibal is that he's being man marked by the opposition regularly now which is a huge compliment to his talent and ability.
To add on, the constant kicks, stamps, and other forms of rough defending that he has to deal with doesn't deter him one bit. That should leave him in great stead for English football at the first-team level.
 

Glorio

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To add on, the constant kicks, stamps, and other forms of rough defending that he has to deal with doesn't deter him one bit. That should leave him in great stead for English football at the first-team level.
It's a shame he's not in our Europa League squad, might have got some minutes this week.
 

SecondFig

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Forson is a talented lad. Didn't someone say he's leaving at the end of the season?

Gutting if true.
There was a story a couple of weeks ago saying he'd decided to stick with us over a move to Arsenal, but the way the article was written made it unclear if that was a decision he'd made now, or last summer. I'd be surprised if he was getting U-23 game time if he had decided to leave
 

lysglimt

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Regardless of contracts - Forson didn't play and celebrate like a player who had decided to leave the club.
 

lysglimt

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Ratings:

Kovar - 5 - had a strange one where he rushed off his line and completely missed the ball. Had very little to do apart from picking the ball out of his net twice.

Helm - 7 - the best of the back-4. No problems defensively and was an immediate threat once he switched with Wellens
Fish - 4 - should forget this game. At fault for the first goal and picked up a yellow 5 minutes later for nasty tackle. Looked shaky afterwards
Taylor - 5 - at fault for the second goal, but was better in the second half where Derby didn't challenge him for pace
Devine - 6 - you can never fault his efforts, and he looks better as a left back than as a central defender. Ok game without being very good.

Galbraith - 7 - some sloppy passes, but also moments of brilliance. Important as he dictates the tempo in the game. Brilliant goal
Hannibal - 7 - had a good game but didn't stand out as he had a less attacking role.
McCann - 6 - strangely anonymous. Did an ok job - but was not too much involved going forward

Forson - 8 - his debut and the result was 1 goal, 2 assists and was also involved in one more goal. Deserves a lot of credits
Shoretire - 9 - simply too good for the Derby-defenders. Maybe his best match for United - and he wasn't even the best on the pitch.
Elanga - 9 - MOTM. Very close to giving him a 10. Not a single Derby-player could keep up with him. His second half was absurd

Fernandes - 6 - ok second half. Didn't contribute too much but provided another attacking option
 

yamo123x

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Elanga was outrageously good last night. Hope to see him involved in pre-season with Hannibal who also coasted through the game with quality.

Galbraith is talented as is Shoretire and the versatile Helm works so hard but all 3 need to develop physically to have a chance.
 

Mickson

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Ratings:

Kovar - 5 - had a strange one where he rushed off his line and completely missed the ball. Had very little to do apart from picking the ball out of his net twice.

Helm - 7 - the best of the back-4. No problems defensively and was an immediate threat once he switched with Wellens
Fish - 4 - should forget this game. At fault for the first goal and picked up a yellow 5 minutes later for nasty tackle. Looked shaky afterwards
Taylor - 5 - at fault for the second goal, but was better in the second half where Derby didn't challenge him for pace
Devine - 6 - you can never fault his efforts, and he looks better as a left back than as a central defender. Ok game without being very good.

Galbraith - 7 - some sloppy passes, but also moments of brilliance. Important as he dictates the tempo in the game. Brilliant goal
Hannibal - 7 - had a good game but didn't stand out as he had a less attacking role.
McCann - 6 - strangely anonymous. Did an ok job - but was not too much involved going forward

Forson - 8 - his debut and the result was 1 goal, 2 assists and was also involved in one more goal. Deserves a lot of credits
Shoretire - 9 - simply too good for the Derby-defenders. Maybe his best match for United - and he wasn't even the best on the pitch.
Elanga - 9 - MOTM. Very close to giving him a 10. Not a single Derby-player could keep up with him. His second half was absurd

Fernandes - 6 - ok second half. Didn't contribute too much but provided another attacking option
Pretty fair but Devine fooled Taylor by letting the ball go, that's why he reacted slowly. IMO Devine was at fault at first, then Taylor should've come closer to the attacker for the shot. I think Devine has been awful this season and was awful yesterday too. Keeps giving the ball away in dangerous situations too. It's a shame because I think he was great before. He may be a victim of playing too much as a CB, lost all confidence.
 

lysglimt

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Pretty fair but Devine fooled Taylor by letting the ball go, that's why he reacted slowly. IMO Devine was at fault at first, then Taylor should've come closer to the attacker for the shot. I think Devine has been awful this season and was awful yesterday too. Keeps giving the ball away in dangerous situations too. It's a shame because I think he was great before. He may be a victim of playing too much as a CB, lost all confidence.
Yeah I may have been just a bit too nice with Devine - I forgot that he gave away the ball for the second goal. Generally all our defenders have been awful this season.

It started with Mengi who at times looked like Bambi - Fernandes defensively is shaky at best and has given away about 4-5 goals this season. He looked a lot better centrally in that one game he played there. Devine has been poor, Fish is arguably our worst defender at the moment. And the worrying part is - all these players have a lot of potential, so for all the praise our youth and reserve coaches deservedly get - they are doing something horribly wrong defensively.
 

Inigo Montoya

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If Elanga isn't seen as first team ready then he needs out on loan at a pretty high level. He has stepped up beyond belief this year
Is he in the EL squad? If so maybe put him in instead of Marcus on Thursday. Give his ankle a well needed rest
 

lenny_1248

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Is he in the EL squad? If so maybe put him in instead of Marcus on Thursday. Give his ankle a well needed rest
Yes.
He was on the bench against Granada.
 

AjaxCunian

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Elanga looks amazing, I would love to see him make it here. Was one of the standouts in his last international tournament as well. The Rashford/Martial hybrid.
 

Ekeke

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Elanga has been really good for u23 level for 2 seasons now. But I feel like his decision making and his buildup play for teammates has improved this season to go with his already established pace, dribbling and ability to score a goal from last season. With Amad not getting much gametime surely he'll be off on loan next season. He was good enough to go out this season.

Maybe he and Galbraith next season are old enough and ready enough to start games for someone but we have so many options in their positions that it doesnt seem likely it would be with us next season.

Forson always looked quality for the 18s, but he looked a natural at this level too and found his smart passes with ease and got his goal showing some movement too
 

Sea-Cow

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Ratings:

Kovar - 5 - had a strange one where he rushed off his line and completely missed the ball. Had very little to do apart from picking the ball out of his net twice.

Helm - 7 - the best of the back-4. No problems defensively and was an immediate threat once he switched with Wellens
Fish - 4 - should forget this game. At fault for the first goal and picked up a yellow 5 minutes later for nasty tackle. Looked shaky afterwards
Taylor - 5 - at fault for the second goal, but was better in the second half where Derby didn't challenge him for pace
Devine - 6 - you can never fault his efforts, and he looks better as a left back than as a central defender. Ok game without being very good.

Galbraith - 7 - some sloppy passes, but also moments of brilliance. Important as he dictates the tempo in the game. Brilliant goal
Hannibal - 7 - had a good game but didn't stand out as he had a less attacking role.
McCann - 6 - strangely anonymous. Did an ok job - but was not too much involved going forward

Forson - 8 - his debut and the result was 1 goal, 2 assists and was also involved in one more goal. Deserves a lot of credits
Shoretire - 9 - simply too good for the Derby-defenders. Maybe his best match for United - and he wasn't even the best on the pitch.
Elanga - 9 - MOTM. Very close to giving him a 10. Not a single Derby-player could keep up with him. His second half was absurd

Fernandes - 6 - ok second half. Didn't contribute too much but provided another attacking option
Thanks for doing this!
 

lenny_1248

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Elanga has been really good for u23 level for 2 seasons now.
I'm not so sure about "2 seasons".
He played like 6 games last season in U-23 scoring 0 goals (correct me if I'm wrong). And it was Division 2.
 

Bertie Wooster

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Question : Can Elanga play as a RW ?
Probably. At his most impressive on the left though
Yeah, he's another of those players who is at his best cutting inside onto his stronger foot so, as he's right footed, he provides much more end product cutting in from the left.

He's got electrifying pace and is a big threat when running into space as he's tough to catch, and he's quite a good right footed finisher when cutting inside.

At the start of the season I worried if he had the touch and footwork to deal with packed and deep defences, which he'll encounter a lot with us. But he seemed to improve that side of his game and linked up well in attacks, although he's still much more threatening when he can get in behind or drive into space and utilise his amazing pace.
 

SAF is the GOAT

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Yeah, he's another of those players who is at his best cutting inside onto his stronger foot so, as he's right footed, he provides much more end product cutting in from the left.

He's got electrifying pace and is a big threat when running into space as he's tough to catch, and he's quite a good right footed finisher when cutting inside.

At the start of the season I worried if he had the touch and footwork to deal with packed and deep defences, which he'll encounter a lot with us. But he seemed to improve that side of his game and linked up well in attacks, although he's still much more threatening when he can get in behind or drive into space and utilise his amazing pace.
Is he a creator ? or just a finisher like Rashford ?
 

Bertie Wooster

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Is he a creator ? or just a finisher like Rashford ?
More of a finisher, which is why he's best on the left cutting in to shoot, rather on the right getting to the byline to cross.

But, so far, his main attribute is very much his electrifying pace driving passed players or into space. He's uncatchable for most defenders at youth levels. He's improving his end product - he can link up in attacks now, and can finish OK with his right foot for a wide striker - but I'd say the consistency of his end product still needs improving for first team football.

As a sub, if the games a bit more open and stretched, then he might make some decent cameos for the first team with his pace. But I think he still needs to improve a little to be ready as a starter, against packed and organised first team defenders.