Ex-Man Utd wonderkid who Jose Mourinho made cry tips Erik ten Hag target for the very top | Football | Sport

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Gomes, who spent 11 years with United having graduated through their academy, left the club in 2020 and has since gone on to establish himself as a top player in Ligue 1 with Lille. The 23-year-old was tipped to have a bright future at Old Trafford after emerging as one of their most talented prospects but things didn’t quite pan out.

He made his debut for United when he was just 16 years old, being brought on to replace Wayne Rooney late on against Crystal Palace to become the youngest player to represent the club since Duncan Edwards in 1953.

However, he would only make nine more first-team appearances before departing for France. Gomes revealed back in 2022 that Jose Mourinho nearly made him cry after tearing his performance apart in front of the whole first team before a cup game.

Gomes has enjoyed a much better time with Lille and is a key player for them. But it is one of his team-mates, Leny Yoro, who is earning all the headlines all the moment. The 18-year-old defender is enjoying a breakthrough season at Lille and attracting the attention of top clubs, including United. Ten Hag has plans to bolster his defence and has the French U21 star near the top of his shortlist.

Gomes has been hugely impressed by the defender’s exploits this season and has told United that they will be getting a player destined to achieve big things. “As soon as he arrived in the group, I understood that “he was going to reach the summits,” he told Eurosport, relayed by Le Petit Lillois.

“When I discovered the pros at the age of 16 at Manchester United, I understood that it was different. He already had the right temperament.

“And that’s not normal for a 16- or 17-year-old player arriving. It’s like he’s already an experienced player. And it showed in the way he trained, the way he behaved. His progress was obvious.”

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