Ashley Young has agreed to sign a three-year contract extension with Manchester United, who are expected to officially announce the new deal later this week.
ESPN understand that Young has accepted United’s contract offer and will subsequently be tied down to Old Trafford until 2018.
The 30-year-old, whose current contract was due to expire next summer, has been rewarded by Louis van Gaal following an excellent individual campaign last season.
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Young was expected to depart Old Trafford following the arrival of Van Gaal, but impressed the veteran Dutch coach last summer before establishing himself as a first-team regular during the 2014-15 season.
The England international adapted to his new left wing-back role with consummate ease and finished the season with two goals in 29 appearances.
Young's future finally sorted
But last month there were doubts over whether or not United would extend the winger’s contract.
Van Gaal added fuel to the flames by claiming that, while Young was impressive last season, the Englishman is not in the same class as the likes of Barcelona superstar Neymar - the type of marquee signing Manchester United are hoping to attract before the transfer window closes on September 1.
“Barcelona has Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez. We have to look also for that kind of player,” Van Gaal was quoted as saying by the Daily Mail. “We look for more creativity and when it is possible to buy for a reasonable price players from that level we shall do that.
“You can expect things from Ashley Young. He had a fantastic season. But he is not a Neymar and we have to compete with that kind of class.”
Young has a role to play at United
However, the failure of Angel di Maria has shown that squad players such as Ashley Young are vital for any football club - even those with money to spend on world-class players in the transfer market.
Young has transformed his reputation at Old Trafford over the past 12 months through hard work and a desire to prove himself at one of the world’s biggest clubs.
Now, with United having strengthened again over the summer, Young will need to prove himself all over again in order to retain his place in Van Gaal’s starting line-up.
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