Little-known Nigerian teenager Shola Shoretire has been included in Manchester United’s UEFA Youth League squad ahead of Wednesday’s game against Valencia in Spain.
The 14-year-old, who is highly regarded at Old Trafford, will travel with Nicky Butt’s under-19s squad with United having already secured qualification to the knock-out stages as group winners.
Eligible to play for Nigeria, the diminutive winger has already been invited to train with England’s youth sides after impressing above his age group for the past two years.
Shoretire, who was part of the under-18s and under-23s’ training camp in Austria in pre-season, has continually impressed playing above his age group in the United youth ranks over the past two years and has trained with England youth sides.
The winger has been called up to the squad alongside 15-year-old defender Will Fish.
United have won four of their five Youth League games so far this term, drawing the other, and put six past Young Boys in their last outing at Leigh Sports Village.
Mason Greenwood has starred for the Reds in his maiden European campaign, scoring five goals in as many games in addition to his 11 strikes in the under-18 Premier League.
Aidan Barlow, the Salford-born midfielder, has scored two penalties for United in the Youth League this season and insisted that the Reds will play to win in the game at Valencia despite there being nothing at stake.
“It feels good but we can’t get too carried away with ourselves,” he admitted after United secured qualification.
“We’ll see who we get in the draw and then take it game by game.
“These competitions are different, especially playing in Europe all these different teams.
“We’ve got to go Valencia and still get a result.
“It’s about pride; we’re Manchester United and we need to win every game.
“We’ll try and win against Valencia and take it from there.”