Mason Greenwood has ‘turned into a man’ over the summer – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

The 19-year-old striker scored in the 5-1 defeat of Leeds.

Simon Peach
Sunday 15 August 2021 22:30
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been impressed by Mason Greenwood’s progress over the summer (Gareth Copley/PA)
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been impressed by Mason Greenwood’s progress over the summer (Gareth Copley/PA)

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been impressed by teenager Mason Greenwood’s accelerated progress having “turned into a man” over the summer.

The 19-year-old academy graduate has scored 30 goals in 106 first-team appearances, having made his debut in the remarkable Champions League triumph at Paris St Germain in March 2019.

Greenwood’s latest strike came in Saturday’s 5-1 season-opening defeat of Leeds when the United forward raced onto a fine Paul Pogba pass before firing home a low strike.

Mason Greenwood scored as Manchester United beat Leeds at Old Trafford (Martin Rickett/PA)

It is the kind of ability that saw Gareth Southgate name the teenager in his provisional Euro 2020 squad, only for injury to see him withdraw from contention.

The England boss was in the stands at the weekend to see the way Greenwood benefitted from a summer off, with Solskjaer excited by the strides he is making.

“I think you can see the benefit in his… I think you can see how much work he has put down this pre-season in his summer,” Solskjaer said. “He’s turned into a man.

“He’s filling out, he’s stronger. His stride is stronger – you know, when he ran away from the defender and scored his goal, it was a joy to see.

“His approach, attitude, application, everything he has done every day has been just better and better and I think that’s maturity as well in the kid.”

Asked if versatile attacker Greenwood thrives on responsibility as the focal point, Solskjaer said: “I don’t know. He just loves playing football wherever he is on the pitch.

“He’s so clean on the ball, strong. I think he enjoyed taking corners.

“When you’ve got kids who just play with courage, no fear whatsoever. It doesn’t really matter where he’s at.

“But he’s more than capable now of using his body, as I said. He’s filled out so much more. He could play through the middle dealing with bigger centre-backs.”