Down The Wings

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Ethan Laird set for season-long loan move to Swansea City

(Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

Manchester United youngster, Ethan Laird, is expected to join Championship side Swansea City within the next week.

Swansea, who have recently appointed Russell Martin as the new manager, have scouted Laird as the perfect addition to their squad following his impressive half-season long stint at MK Dons in League One, where the United talent displayed promising signs of potential star-quality. There is no doubt that Russell Martin will have played a major role in the recruitment of Laird, having previously managed him last season.

A move to a Championship-level side such as Swansea should be seen as a positive step in this youth prospects’ career. This loan will provide Laird with the opportunity to develop his game through experiencing consistent game time within a highly competitive, tough league. This is something that Laird has struggled to find due to the unfortunate extent of his frequent injuries.

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Laird can be described as an electric, attacking-minded Right-back who possesses the ability to successfully run at opposition defences, weaving between players in a skillful and entertaining manner. Laird’s approach consists of a fearless, relentless style of play, which entails overlapping runs and the ability to whip the ball into the box with precise, dart-like accuracy something that some Manchester United fans would argue their side has certainly lacked within recent years.

Despite possessing the speed and athletic ability to provide Manchester United with ample defensive cover at full-back, it seems highly unlikely that Laird will be able to work his way into the first team just yet especially considering the consistent defensive form of Aaron Wan-Bissaka. In addition, the return of Diogo Dalot, who has impressed during his loan spell at AC Milan, has led many to believe that he will act as United’s backup Right-back going into the 2021/22 season.

This provides more evidence to suggest that a loan move would be ideal for Laird, considering his recent lack of game-time, potential attacking ability as a right-back, and his relationship with Russell Martin- having already worked under him.

Manchester United are showing ambition in developing their youth prospects and have therefore opted to send several players out on loan during this transfer window, with Tahith Chong, Facundo Pellistri, Brandon Williams, Teden Mengi, and Axel Tuanzebe, all either heading for loan moves or expecting loans within the coming weeks. Hopefully, Laird can continue to develop and sharpen his electrifying footballing abilities in preparation to eventually challenge for a first-team spot within the Manchester United ranks. Laird’s attacking capabilities can be seen as a parallel to Wan-Bissaka’s defensive strengths, suggesting that Laird could provide United with a different type of option at right-back in years to come. However, due to the strength and depth currently in that position, Laird will have to wait.

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