Michael Carrick explains why Scott McTominay can step into his shoes at Man United
The youngster made his senior debut against Arsenal in May and, having impressed over pre-season, has continued to feature under Jose Mourinho this term, making 11 appearances in total so far.
Carrick made the decision to retire in June after spending over four months on the sidelines due to heart problems and Jose Mourinho, in turn, has set his sights on making midfield reinforcements in the summer.
But the 36-year-old, speaking to the club’s official website, was quick to note that McTominay can play an important role under Mourinho next term.
“He is willing to learn and listen,” he said. “That is one of the biggest things for a young lad, to have that attitude. Of course I am here to help him and I try to do it as much as I can.”
“I know he will take my place some day and that is not something I would be afraid of, or try to put him off, because it is important to help the future and Scott is definitely that.
“It is my responsibility to do all I can to help him. It is something I really enjoy, to see the younger lads coming in and getting a chance. Whether it be in my position or not, it’s how the game goes and how the club evolves.”
To hand Carrick a place on the coaching staff was a no-brainer of a decision for Mourinho. This is a man who understands the club in microscopic detail and takes the art of coaching very seriously. He has been working towards this kind of role for some time, and his very style on the pitch – calculated, stabilising, mindful of the game’s general rhythm – aligns with that of a future manager.
And his presence for McTominay in particular will be invaluable. The youngster has impressed most with his composed ball circulation and positioning in the middle, brining to the table a simple yet effective way of handling business that Mourinho admires, and there aren’t many better players than Carrick for helping to foster further improvement in those areas down the years.