The England international has come under fire once again from his club boss, and a former Red Devils full-back has added his voice to the debate
Phil Neville says Luke Shaw should be “embarrassed” by further criticism from Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho, with something “fundamentally wrong” with the defender.
The 21-year-old full-back was overlooked by his manager again for a home date with West Brom on Saturday, despite having turned out for England over the international break.
Shaw has struggled for regular game time since completing a £30 million move to Old Trafford from Southampton in 2014. Injuries have done little to aid his cause, but Mourinho has claimed that the youngster is “a long way behind” other members of his squad in terms of fitness and commitment.
Mou has failed Shaw with attacks
Neville told Sky Sports News on the latest questioning of Shaw: “Having played at Manchester United, I think I’d be embarrassed as a player if those accusations were levelled at me in terms of training performances.
“To play football at Manchester United you need to train at 110 per cent, you need to be determined and focused; the fundamentals of a professional footballer.
“He should be Man United’s left-back; no question with the ability he’s got. Something must be going fundamentally wrong. Ashley Young played left-back on Saturday and, if I was Luke Shaw, I would be thinking ‘I should be playing ahead of Young at left-back’, regardless of how good Young is.
“As a young person in life sometimes you need a kick up the backside and I just wonder whether it’s a tactic from Jose to give him a bit of a jolt to say: ‘Look, it’s now or never Luke, you’re wasting the opportunity that’s in front of you, other players are ahead of you, you’re fit, training every day, and your attitude needs to be right.’
“It could be just what Luke Shaw needs. Jose has probably got to the point where he probably feels it’s not the last throw of the dice but a kick up the backside.
“If you speak to Manchester United and England fans, they’d say Shaw should be England’s No. 1 left-back and Manchester United’s No. 1 left-back. He should be a Manchester United full-back over the next 10 years.
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“He has got a chance. You’d hope to think he does. I think Jose said it a month ago. You just wonder whether these strong comments are the final effort from Jose to shake Luke into form and realisation.”
Shaw penned a four-year contract with United upon his arrival, with that agreement including the option for 12-month extension.
He has, however, been restricted to 43 appearances in three seasons and is now facing further questions regarding his future at Old Trafford.