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Andy Gray stopped short of claiming “You can't win anything with kidsâ€, but the message from the Sky TV pundit was clear after the Reds' opening day draw with Newcastle United.

On The Last Word programme, Gray argued Sir Alex's bench was too inexperienced, too lightweight to inspire confidence in those players already on the pitch. How will they feel, he asked, when they look to the dugout and see fresh faces instead of familiar old heads?

If Sunday's performances are anything to go on, I'm sure none of the United players will be bothered one bit. Brazilians Rodrigo Possebon and Rafael, both handed Premier League debuts in the second half, hardly looked like liabilities.

Possebon, in particular, relished his central midfield role and exuded confidence. He was eager for possession and rarely gave the ball away during his half-hour cameo.

One fan, sat behind me in the Stretford End, blurted out “Who?†when stadium announcer Alan Keegan introduced the 19-year-old as a second-half replacement for Ryan Giggs. Ten minutes later the same supporter was purring over a perfectly weighted ball played into Wayne Rooney's feet.

And it was Possebon who threaded an injury-time pass through to Rafael, who jinked on the edge of the box before being hacked to the ground by Nicky Butt just inches outside the area.

Butt would have appreciated the youngster's quick feet and willingness to run at defenders on his debut. After all, he was one of those famous “kids†Alan Hansen was talking about after the Reds lost 3-1 to Aston Villa on the opening day of the 1995 season.


Of course, it's unfair and far too early to predict that this current batch of youngsters will go on to reach the dizzying heights scaled by the likes of Butt, Beckham, Scholes and the Neville brothers.

What is certain, however, is that in Rodrigo Possebon, Rafael and Fraizer Campbell (who started up front alongside Rooney), Sir Alex has three outstanding young individuals who are all capable of playing at the top level. As an addition to last season's Double-winning squad, they should be viewed only as positive. Let's hope we see more of them in the coming weeks.

http://www.manutd.com/default.sps?pagegid={83A644F4-1A7E-48B9-AF95-4605613A9A18}&newsid=6616260&page=1
 

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marty davidson said:
One fan, sat behind me in the Stretford End, blurted out “Who?†when stadium announcer Alan Keegan introduced the 19-year-old as a second-half replacement for Ryan Giggs. Ten minutes later the same supporter was purring over a perfectly weighted ball played into Wayne Rooney's feet.
Yeah. Fan. Alright.

****ing prawn ****ing sandwich ****ing brigade.
 
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