John O’Shea tips Kobbie Mainoo to be “main man” vs. Liverpool despite Erik ten Hag warning – Man United News And Transfer News


Former Manchester United star John O’Shea has insisted that Kobbie Mainoo can be the difference maker for his side vs. Liverpool amid Erik ten Hag’s warning that the youngster should not be compared to football legends like Clarence Seedorf.

Mainoo has been the breakout star this season, during a campaign in which the Red Devils have struggled to achieve consistent results and performances.

The homegrown star has impressed with his calm and composed displays, which have at times made him stand head and shoulders above some of his more experienced and senior teammates.

Rio Ferdinand previously said that Mainoo reminds him of ex-Netherlands international Clarence Seedorf.

Seedorf was one of the best in his generation and played for some of Europe’s biggest clubs like Real Madrid, AC Milan, Inter Milan and Ajax.

However, Ten Hag warned that Mainoo should not be compared with anyone and should instead be allowed to forge his own legacy.

“So I think never ever compare players with another player. Never. Because Kobbie Mainoo, but also other players, they build their own identity. Don’t compare with anyone. His skillset, that is so typical. And it’s so Kobbie Mainoo, it’s nothing to do with other players.”

“Of course, he can learn from other players, especially from great players as Clarence Seedorf was. But Kobbie Mainoo is Kobbie Mainoo. He has big potential and I’m quite sure he will have a big career.”

Mainoo and his teammates are set to return to action on Sunday when they take on Liverpool in the quarter-final of the FA Cup.

The domestic competition currently represents United’s last chance of winning silverware this season.

O’Shea spoke to club media and tipped Mainoo to be the main man vs. Jurgen Klopp’s men.

The interim Republic of Ireland head coach expressed optimism that United can take advantage of Liverpool’s workload and busy fixture schedule to sink them at Old Trafford.

He remarked, “I think the players will be confident, because look at the backing they’ll get from Old Trafford against Liverpool, but also being aware that, look, Liverpool have players that can hurt you. So it’s that balance, but also I think just the fact that it’s United’s big chance to win a trophy.”

“Liverpool, obviously, are still fighting on a couple more fronts so they might have their eye off the ball a little bit maybe. Hopefully, United can take advantage.”

O’Shea hailed the United youngsters for the way they’ve stepped up following injuries to some key players.

“We’re still giving chances to a few younger players this season too, and obviously, in particular, Kobbie Mainoo. He’s been the main man and hopefully he will be the main man against Liverpool on the day as well.”

The 42-year-old called on supporters to rise up to the occasion and do their best to push the team over the line against their bitter Merseyside rivals, who are aiming to complete an unprecedented quadruple of Premier League, FA Cup, Carabao Cup and Europa League, in Klopp’s final season at the helm.

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