Shaw: Greenwood can be Man Utd's new Van Persie

Luke Shaw believes Mason Greenwood has the ability to emulate Robin van Persie's exploits at Manchester United.

Mason Greenwood   -  Getty Images

Mason Greenwood could be Manchester United's next Robin van Persie, according to defender Luke Shaw.

Greenwood has enjoyed an impressive breakout season at Old Trafford, scoring 12 times and laying on four assists despite 20 of his 36 outings coming from the bench.

Writing in his weekly lockdown diary on United's official website, Shaw marvelled at the 18-year-old's potential and sees shades of Van Persie – the Netherlands great whose prolific debut season at Old Trafford in 2012-13 inspired Alex Ferguson's farewell Premier League title triumph.

"He’s had a fantastic first season in the first team. He’s clearly a natural goalscorer," Shaw observed. "This season – even though he doesn’t start all the time – his goals return and his stats are great, and he’s got some assists too. For someone so young, in their first season, he’s done brilliantly.

"He’s still got so much to learn, but if he carries on working hard and pushes himself every day then I don’t see why we can’t see him turn into another Robin van Persie or a player of that style that’ll score lots of goals for us."

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Greenwood's most notable trait is his two-footed capabilities and Shaw knows what a considerable challenge this can present for defenders.

"Purely the fact that he’s so two-footed, it’s unbelievable," the England international said. "When I was younger, when I played youth football, there was a young lad called Lewis Baker who played with Chelsea, he was always both-footed.

"Him and Mason are probably the only two pure two-footed players I’ve seen. When I was at Southampton, Adam Lallana could also use his left and right very well.

"Also Ravel Morrison was very strong on both feet and we’ve seen a lot of people talking about his potential in recent weeks, but I’d say Mason is stronger on that front."

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