Erik ten Hag feels Mason Mount will be a key man for Manchester United and will start to show his true worth once the players start to gel.
Mount, 24, has struggled to impose himself on the side since a big-money summer move from Chelsea. The Red Devils paid Chelsea around £55m for the England midfielder as he became one of the many stars sold by the Blues. However, the Portsmouth-born ace has yet to make much of an impact for the Old Trafford giants.
He featured in their first two Premier League games of the campaign before picking up a hamstring injury.
That kept the former Derby County loan man out of action until the EFL Cup clash with Crystal Palace on September 26.
He then started against the Eagles in a 1-0 Premier League defeat and in Tuesday’s Champions League loss to Galatasaray at the Theatre of Dreams.
It is still early days in his development as a Manchester United player. But Ten Hag is adamant that the man with 36 England caps has all the attributes to become a vital part of the side.
“He can be a big part (of what we are creating here),” he told Manutd.com.
“He can play in that game by supplying, making the connections, making the link-ups for those in the front line.
“He has abilities to give that [energy] and to supply our front players by combinations.”
Man Utd improvement will see Mount blossom
It has been a disappointing start to 2023-2024 for the north-west giants.
Three wins and four defeats sees them down in 10th spot in the top-flight standings heading into the weekend fixtures.
And they have also struggled in Europe, sitting bottom of Champions League Group A after two matches.
A 4-3 loss at Bayern Munich was followed by a 3-2 defeat at home to the Turkish outfit.
And they now have work to do to reach the knockout stage of Europe’s elite club competition.
Ten Hag finds himself under pressure and needs his side to start performing.
United have looked a disjointed unit, playing as 11 individuals rather than a coherent side.
The return of Mount is a shot in the arm for all concerned. And the Dutch tactician believes that he will begin to prove his value to the side once they start to show more cohesion.
“Also in his moments of defence transition, in defending and pressing he can be and he is already a great player for us because he puts a lot of effort in,” he added.
“When we get better connections [in the team], that will grow.”
Mount’s next task will be to try and help United get back to winning ways against Brentford on Saturday afternoon.
They then face a trip to Bramall Lane to face struggling Sheffield United in what look to be two winnable games.