Manchester United could be set to hand a debut to Teden Mengi against LASK, but what do we know about the 18-year-old?
Mengi has a brand new squad number
In preparation for his first-team chance, Mengi has been given the squad number 43 and was pictured with it on his training kit.
It’s definitely a promotion from the number 73, his previous number.
Why should Teden Mengi play now?
United are facing a centre-back shortage with Phil Jones and Axel Tuanzebe both out of action.
While Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly are available, a Europa League dead rubber is the perfect time to give Mengi some game time. Ethan Laird is also likely to feature.
The Red Devils have a 5-0 lead heading into the second leg, so Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is likely to mix things up.
Mengi was a sub against Astana but he never made it onto the field.
Is Teden Mengi up to it?
Manchester-born Mengi has been excellent for United’s U-23 team and played a crucial role, also captaining the U-18s run to the FA Youth Cup semi-finals.
U-23 boss Neil Wood has been effusive in his praise for Mengi, stating to the Manchester Evening News that he backs the defender to follow in the footsteps of Brandon Williams.
“We’ll be looking to work with him next season and he’s one we want to ‘do a Brandon’ with, push him on and the goal is to try and get him pushed up into that first team if we can,” Wood is quoted as saying.
One of Mengi’s standout qualities is his pace, which is remarkable for a centre-back.
It was reported that Mengi clocked the fourth fastest sprint time in training, behind only Jesse Lingard, Axel Tuanzebe and Daniel James.
Mengi is also widely praised for his composure on the ball and his calm approach augurs well for senior level.
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