Luke Shaw could have joined Arsenal early in career before Manchester United move, if Martin Keown got his way

Arsenal were told to sign Luke Shaw when he was just 16 years old.

The Manchester United full-back could have ended up at the Emirates if club legend Martin Keown had his way.

Keown says that he made the Gunners aware of Shaw’s quality when he saw him playing youth team football at Southampton.

Shaw went on to play for the Saints first-team as a teenager, before eventually securing a lucrative transfer to United.

The 23-year-old has also represented England and this week earned a recall to Gareth Southgate’s squad after an impressive start to the campaign.

Shaw could have had a different career path

Shaw could have left Southampton in favour of a move to Arsenal

But his career could have taken a different path if Arsene Wenger and club scouts had listened to Keown’s recommendation.

Keown told The Sun: “I first watched him as a 16-year-old playing on a training pitch for Southampton against Reading.

“In the first ten seconds, he whipped a ball across the box with such power and precision that I just thought, ‘Wow.’

“I was standing next to an Arsenal scout and I immediately said, ‘You’ve got to sign him.’”

Keown saw Shaw when he was just 16 years old

Meanwhile, Shaw’s representatives have warned United that he will not be rushed into signing a new deal at Old Trafford.

The left-back has enjoyed an impressive start to the season despite the Red Devils losing two of their opening three Premier League games.

Shaw was recalled to the England squad this week as a result, replacing his United team-mate Ashley Young in Southgate’s selection.

Shaw made his England debut against Denmark in 2014

Shaw has made an impressive start to the season with United

The manager wants to trial a few younger faces during the games against Spain and Switzerland.

Phil Jones also lost his place in the squad.

Shaw represented England at all youth levels before progressing into the senior set-up, where he has earned seven caps.

His debut for the Three Lions came before his move to United, having made his debut in a friendly against Denmark in February 2014, replacing Ashley Cole at half-time.

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