Man Utd to name academy graduate in matchday squad for 4,000th consecutive game

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League

It’s been a tough few seasons for Manchester United.

After years of dominating the Premier League under Sir Alex Ferguson, the Red Devils have had a number of disappointing campaigns with David Moyes, Louis van Gaal, Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at the helm.

They’ve failed to challenge for a Premier League title ever since Fergie retired after the 2012/13 season, finishing seventh, fourth, fifth, sixth, second and sixth.

While they might not be winning league titles anymore, one thing at Old Trafford remains.

This weekend’s clash against Everton is set to be the 4,000th consecutive match in which United have named a matchday squad consisting of a player that graduated through their academy.

The run started with a Second Division match against Fulham at Craven Cottage on 30 October 1937.

Since then, the likes of the Busby Babes, Bobby Charlton, George Best, the Class of 92 and Marcus Rashford have all been included in matchday squads in the past 4,000 games.

BRITAIN-ENTERTAINMENT-CINEMA-THE CLASS OF 92

It really is an incredible stat.

Rashford is obviously the star graduate at the moment with the 22-year-old in incredible form.

The striker has scored 14 goals in his previous 14 matches for club and country as he attempts to bring the glory days back to the Theatre of Dreams.

And he knows just how important the academy is to this club.

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League

"The academy holds a huge place in United's history," Rashford told BBC.

"They mould you into a Manchester United person or a Manchester United player. But the process begins before you can even remember. There are people who have been there since they were five or six. I was having fun until I was about 11 or 12.

"You don't realise how good you can be or the potential you have. You are just having a kickabout with some kids you have grown to like and have become friends with through football. Looking back on it, the stuff we used to do in training, that is how the process started in becoming a Manchester United player."

With the likes of Mason Greenwood, Brandon Williams, Angel Gomes and Tahith Chong all coming through the ranks, United’s tradition looks set to continue for many years to come.

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