Manchester United have managed to tie both Will Keane and Tom Lawrence to new long-term deals at Old Trafford, with the talented duo having officially put pen to paper on respective contracts.
Following Louis van Gaal’s appointment to the Red Devils’ hot-seat the future of a number of players on the club’s books has been up in the air, but it would appear that the Dutchman will continue with his famous mantra of giving youth a chance to break through into the first-team. According to Goal both Keane and Lawrence, who have represented the senior squad in the past, put pen to paper on long-term agreements which see them solidify their important status at the club.
Though as far back as early July it had been claimed that Keane was ready to commit his future to Old Trafford, it took talks with United officials to ensure that the contract became a reality. The 21-year-old forward has steadily risen through the ranks in Manchester alongside his twin brother Michael, and is tipped by the masses to have a bright future.
Last term saw the 6ft 2in forward take part in QPR’s promotion-winning campaign from the Championship, though his nine appearances for Harry Redknapp were not rewarded by any goals. Having been handed his professional debut under Sir Alex Ferguson in 2011 Keane will be eager to push on and establish himself under Van Gaal, whilst the 62-year-old’s readiness to give young talent a chance to shine will no doubt boost him.
As opposed to Keane, who has long been expected to eventually step up to the first-team, it took Lawrence until the very last game of last season under Ryan Giggs to get his shot. The 20-year-old started United’s fixture against Hull City in May, and will now be expecting to build on that next season.
Van Gaal’s plans
The Dutchman has made no secret of his desire to assess, evaluate and then potentially shake up the current United squad, and so both Keane and Lawrence will consider themselves fortunate to have been tied down to deals so soon into his reign. However a number of players may not be so lucky, with Javier Hernandez, Danny Welbeck, Tom Cleverley, Nani and Chris Smalling all facing uncertain futures.
Given the fact that big changes are a hallmark of Van Gaal’s managerial career United fans can expect plenty of characters to be given opportunities in the first-team where they otherwise might not have been. Keane and Lawrence will certainly both be hoping to take advantage.