Home » Manchester United youngster Alvaro Fernandez progressing well on loan at Preston North End

Manchester United youngster Alvaro Fernandez progressing well on loan at Preston North End

by Seth Dooley

Alvaro Fernandez is making steady progress plying his trade in the Championship this season with Preston North End.

Fernandez, 19, played 88 minutes in yesterday’s FA Cup fixture which saw Preston defeat Huddersfield Town.

LancsLive described the teenager’s proactive performance:

“On the front foot all game, looking to make things happen. Delivered low crosses into dangerous areas, even if the end product wasn’t always there. A bit of miscommunication with [Freddie] Woodman in the build-up to the [Huddersfield] Town goal.”

This review is almost quintessential for a Premier League youngster developing in the Championship: impressive and determined, but liable to unforced errors and tactical mishaps.

Fernandez has had a fruitful time learning about and experiencing professional football in a tough league – he’s made 20 appearances so far in the Championship out of a possible 26 and has quickly become a mainstay in Preston’s team.

Preston have drawn Tottenham Hotspur in the fourth round of the FA Cup following yesterday afternoon’s victory. Playing against a top Premier League side should encourage Fernandez to impress the watchful eyes of Erik ten Hag’s staff.

The Spanish left-back, who signed for United from Real Madrid in 2020, has 18 months left on his current deal, but United hold the option to extend his contract by one further year.

With such, the youngster’s goal is to keep impressing at Preston in order to instate himself into United’s first team squad.

Speaking to Relevo about his desires for the near future, Fernandez said: “My goal is to return to Manchester United and earn a place in the first team,

“I speak enough with Darren Fletcher, who is involved in the thinking of the first team.”

Indeed, Fernandez has been fortunate with his man-management at Preston.

Head coach Ryan Lowe has been shrewd with his use of the Spanish teenager, taking him out of the starting eleven during November when he felt Fernandez’s mentality was beginning to drop.

“He lost a bit of focus a couple of weeks ago, I must say, when he was out of the team,” Lowe explained to LancsLive after Fernandez regained his place in December, “He knew that, so we sat him down, had a chat and spoke to Man United over one or two things.

“He loves it here, the kid, doesn’t he?

“Coming across the pitch and losing the ball; his recovery runs have got to be sprints. But, he is a youngster who has got fantastic talent.

“We still have to coach him and tell him that tactically he’s got to be on it.”

With coaches aware of the left-back’s superior raw talent and of the importance of mentality to make it at United, Fernandez can be expected to feature prominently in the Championship whilst learning and developing in the physical, tactical, and mental aspects of the game.

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