Manchester United academy graduate James Garner didn’t get the minutes he would have wanted on pre-season tour due to an injury, but he is still aiming for a chance in the first team under Erik ten Hag this season.
The young midfielder answered some questions for Simon Peach before the squad returned from Australia.
Interviewed #MUFC midfielder James Garner in Perth towards the end of the tour. He’s desperate to make his mark this season but knows he needs regular football at this stage of his careerhttps://t.co/m7xbrdmgPg
— Simon Peach (@SimonPeach) July 25, 2022
Speaking to PA News Agency, as per The Independent, Garner said: “I had a really good season last season – full of confidence, full of experience. The experience I didn’t have, I feel that now I do have.
“I played in some big pressure games and I just think it’s a new and improved me. It was almost as perfect a loan experience that I could possibly have had.
“I played pretty much every single game, played well and ended up winning promotion. For me, it’s probably the perfect loan.
“However, for me now because I’ve played two seasons back-to-back, where I’ve been playing games non-stop, I don’t really want to stop that. I want to play week in, week out.
“That is of course what I want to do. I’m not too sure but pre-season has been good so far and, like I said, hopefully in the next two, three weeks – we’ve still got games left – I can show what I can do.”
Garner was outstanding in Nottingham Forest’s play-off winning side last season and held his own in the Championship. The question he now asks himself is whether he’s ready to step up to the plate at United in the Premier League?
He is not ruling out a move away from Old Trafford, adding: “I want to play for United. Of course that’s obviously my aim.
“But I feel like if I’m not going to be playing as regularly as I would like to then I’m definitely open to going back on loan to a Premier League side. I feel like I’m a midfielder that can do pretty much everything.
“I feel like I can play in the six or eight role. Last season I played in the 10 role as well – I’m not saying that’s what I prefer, but I’m saying I can play in that position if needed – so I feel like I offer everything that a midfielder would need.”
The 21-year-old impressed so much during his time in Steve Cooper’s side last season, I wouldn’t be surprised if other top-flight teams started enquiring about signing him on loan for 12-months.
Unless Ten Hag plans to use Garner this season, it would be best to move him on, though I think he is ready for his chance.
It is worth noting that Forest have already signed Dean Henderson on loan from United, so they can’t sign Garner on a similar deal.
Let us know in the comments section if you think United should keep Garner this season or loan him out?