Man United FC

Man Utd have a standout candidate to take Mason Greenwood’s No 11 shirt amid uncertainty

Mason Greenwood's long-term future with Manchester United remains questionable.

Mason Greenwood, a Manchester United striker, is currently without a contract. The England international has not played for the club since January of last year, but he is now free to play. However, if the Red Devils decide to sell the 21-year-old, Antony may take the No 11 shirt, which would then become available.

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Greenwood has long been regarded as one of Manchester United’s top young players, having made his debut in 2019 at the age of 17.

However, it is unknown whether the England international will resume his career at Old Trafford.

Whatever happens, United needs a new center-forward. Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane and Napoli’s Victor Osimhen are both being considered.

United is undertaking its own inquiry behind the scenes in order to make a final decision on Greenwood’s future.

There is, however, a chance that the Red Devils will add him to a list of players for whom they are open to offers this summer.

And if Greenwood leaves, his No. 11 jersey will be available for someone else to take.

Of course, Kane or Osimhen might take it on if they end up transferring to Manchester. Erik Ten Hag would be making two world-class additions.

But there’s a chance Antony will inherit it, with the Brazil international in desperate need of a spark.

Contrary to popular belief, the Samba star has not been a complete failure since arriving from Ajax in the summer.

Antony has had some positive moments for the club, with his dramatic winner against Barcelona in the Europa League in February, particularly memorable.

He was also bright at the weekend as United boosted their hopes of a top-four finish with a 2-0 win over Everton on Saturday.

But with just three goals and no assists from 17 league matches, it’s clear more improvement is required.

Giving him the No 11 shirt could, however, trigger an upturn in form and fortunes.

Upon moving to United last year, Antony took the No 21 – which had previously been worn by Edinson Cavani, who left for Valencia on a free transfer.

He had previously worn the No 11 at Ajax, shining with 12 goal involvements from 23 league games.

And giving him such an iconic shirt number at United could be the ticket to getting Antony back to his Amsterdam best.

The No 11 was, of course, previously worn by Red Devils hero Ryan Giggs throughout his time at the club.

Ever since the Welshman’s retirement in 2014, however, players have struggled to do the digits justice.

There’s Greenwood, of course, who was looking good until he wasn’t able to play last year.

Anthony Martial never took to the No 11 like he did the No 9, reverting back to the latter jersey in 2019 after previously being stripped of it by Jose Mourinho.

And Adnan Januzaj failed to do it justice, too, after taking Giggs’ old shirt in 2014.

Former United star Andrei Kanchelskis, meanwhile, recently called for patience when it comes to Antony.

“My advice for Man United fans is to please just be patient with Antony,” he told Ladbrokes.

“I really believe the club has a great player in him – there’s no question about it. His problem right now is finding that consistency. One game he’s great, the next? Not so good.

“But he’s still so young and I’m confident he can go on to be a success at United.”

He added: “Consistency is such a hard thing to find, though.

“In fact, there’s only one player I can think of during my time at the club, who I can honestly say was consistently good in every single match, and that was Denis Irwin.

“Antony needs time, and that’s all I ask of Man United fans: give him time.

“I’m sure after one season playing in England – which is a really tough place to adapt to and settle in – he can go on to be a real success. Wait for him, please; he’s a great player.”

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