Luke Shaw suffered 'harshest possible' comments from Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho, says Gary Neville

The former United full-back believes Shaw can save his Old Trafford career, but he must respond to his manager's criticism

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The Independent Football

Jose Mourinho’s comments on Luke Shaw’s efforts in training were the “harshest possible” and the full-back must now “make it work”, according to Gary Neville.

The Manchester United full-back’s Old Trafford future is bleak after Mourinho described his commitment, focus and ambition as a “long way behind” that of his team-mates.

Neville, a former full-back of 602 United appearances, has now called on Shaw to respond well to the criticism and turn his spell in Manchester around.

“The harshest possible comment that you could probably have levelled against you is that you don't train hard enough and Jose has levelled that at Luke,” he told Sky Sports News.

“This is a sensational talent who's got many years in front of him. He's had injury problems, which I think have been his biggest problem.

“He's said some harsh things about a few players this season at time Jose Mourinho and others have responded… [Shaw’s] got to respond. This is it now, he's at Manchester United, he's got to make it work. 


Neville added: “It's a big signing, great talent, don't have regrets and the end of your career is what I would say. Ultimately at this moment in time, it's how Luke Shaw takes those, if you like, ‘harsh words’ on. 

“Does he think: 'Well that's it, it's the end for me.' Or does he think: 'I'll show you.' I hope it's the latter. I hope he feels as though: 'I'm going to get this right, I'm going to prove this man wrong.'”

Neville has previously worked with Shaw in his former role as assistant manager of the England national team and believes that fitness problems are why the 21-year-old's progress has been hampered.

“I think ultimately fitness has been his biggest problem in terms of injury and getting back fit to the levels he was at,” he said.

“He's the type of player, and he's not just on his own, he looks to me like he needs 10 or 15 games on the run to get to his real fighting weight, as it were, in terms of being able to sprint forward every single minute of the game. He very rarely gets that sort of consistency and that's his biggest issue. 

“There's lots of talk about his lifestyle, but I saw him with England. I didn't see a problem with that personally, I saw him train quite well, I saw him work hard, I saw him do the right things,” Neville added.

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