Timothy Fosu-Mensah has joined newly promoted Premier League side Fulham on a season-long loan deal from Manchester United.
The defender, who also went out on loan last term, becoming a regular for fellow London outfit, Crystal Palace, joins the Cottagers in search of additional playing time.
Chance for Dutchman to impress again
Despite featuring in all five of United’s summer friendlies, the young Dutchman has been allowed to leave ‘to obtain regular first-team football’, per the Red Devils’ official website, suggesting that would not have been on offer had he stayed with José Mourinho’s side.
Coming off the back of his successful campaign with Roy Hodgson’s Palace last term, however, it does represent an opportunity for Fosu-Mensah to further establish himself in the Premier League at Craven Cottage, having played at both right-back and centre-back in the 2017/18 season.
The 20-year-old told Fulham’s official site that he has “a good feeling about the club” and that “it’s good for my development to be here,” which does at least infer that his long-term future still lies with the Red Devils.
Although playing time should be easier to come by for Fosu-Mensah in London than it would be in Manchester this term, United’s decision to allow the talented youngster to depart, albeit on a temporary basis, is certainly a bold one.
Embed from Getty Images
United too quick to let Fosu-Mensah depart?
That’s because, having sold Daley Blind this summer and Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young another year into their 30s, United’s full-back department is not only ageing, but in need of reenergising and some fresh blood.
Valencia is currently injured, as well as new signing Diego Dalot, while Young will not yet be fully fit, having only returned to training at the start of the week after playing a key role in England’s run to the World Cup semi-finals earlier this summer.
That leaves Luke Shaw and Matteo Darmian as Mourinho’s only fully fit players for the two full-back roles ahead of Friday’s visit of Leicester City to Old Trafford, the latter having openly admitted that he wishes to leave the club.
Fosu-Mensah may be handed more game time during his loan spell with Slavisa Jokanovic’s side, and perhaps even allowed to play in a more central role, where many see him to be a better prospect.
But the Dutchman looked a good bet to start against the Foxes for United’s Premier League opener, and keeping him around at least until January would’ve eased the pressure on United’s injured players returning, as well as compensating for the potential departure of Darmian, who can still join a foreign club until the end of August.