Facundo Pellistri's lack of Man Utd first team game time explained


Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has explained why Facundo Pellistri is yet to feature for Manchester United’s first team since joining on transfer deadline day.

Pellistri joined United from Peñarol in his native Uruguay in a £7million deal on the final day of the transfer window, but has so far been restricted to under-23 action.

However, the 18-year-old trained with the first team ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League trip to face Istanbul Basaksehir, having been an unused substitute for the 2-1 win over Paris-Saint Germain last month.

Pellistri played senior football back in his home country, despite his young age – and Solskjaer has outlined his plan to prepare the attacking midfielder for first-team action.

However, the United boss has made it clear he will give the teenager time to settle into the reserves first.



Facundo Pellistri training with United’s first team on Tuesday

“He’s a young boy coming over and it’s all new for him,” Solskjaer told United’s official website.

“He’ll need a few games in the reserves, of course, to try to find his feet in a new country.

“It’s been very positive so far and he’s someone we’ll be patient with and we’ll give him time to settle in and get used to us.

“You’ll see him in the reserves, probably in the next game.”



Pellistri has played senior football for Peñarol in his native Uruguay

That game will be against Brighton on Friday, after he made his debut for Neil Wood’s U23s in a 2-1 win over Everton in Premier League 2.

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He lined up alongside fellow newcomer Alvaro Fernandez and senior players like Brandon Williams and Marcos Rojo against Everton.

And Pellistri was given a tough introduction to English football, with Beni Baningime and Seb Quirk both booked for tackles on the youngster.

Meanwhile, Pellistri has been hailed by his compatriot and fellow deadline day signing Edinson Cavani, who says the midfielder has a “mischievous nature to his game”.



Edinson Cavani says his compatriot Pellistri ‘has a lot to offer’

“Pellistri is a young lad and I really love the way he plays the game.

“He’s the typical South American footballer who has that mischievous nature to his game, and the way he lives his football is a bit like, as we say in Uruguay, being on el campito , as we call it, a makeshift pitch where you have a kickabout for fun with your mates or whoever.

“He’s a youngster who has a lot to learn but who has a lot to offer too.

“He’s already shown what he can do at Peñarol, in the games where he’s featured. I’ve liked him from the moment he made his first-team debut at Peñarol, I liked him a lot.

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