Manchester United full-back Luke Shaw has stated that manager José Mourinho has been an extra confidence boost in picking up and maintaining a regular role in the starting XI, with the youngster expected to start in Saturday's clash with Burnley.
Really helped getting regular minutes
His time at Old Trafford may not have been the dream that Shaw would have hoped for after his move from Southampton in 2014, with serious injuries, lack of fitness and lack of form has seen him fall out of favour and even potentially leaving the Theatre of Dreams.
The 22-year-old has enjoyed his own renaissance in the last couple of weeks and months, especially in the festive period, with Shaw having his best run in the side since August 2016 having started the last five matches.
It wouldn't be an understatement to say that Mourinho has been the youngster's biggest critic but he has certainly been won over by his performances, and Shaw was full of praise for his coach for giving him "extra confidence" throughout the festive period which he says was the "best thing" for him to regain full fitness.
"It’s really nice to hear," Shaw told United Review on the manager's influence. "The manager has been really good with me and has given me extra confidence."
"He’s just told me to go out and enjoy the games and that’s what I’ve been doing," he stated. "I’m just focused on working really hard for the manager and for the team because I want to keep on playing and hopefully more games will come."
"The Christmas period was actually the best thing for me," the full-back admitted. "Having lots of games close together and I felt really good after three games in a week because that’s what I needed."
"I’m feeling good and it’s been really nice to be back on the pitch and enjoying having game time," said the 22-year-old. "The last few weeks personally have been good but, as a whole and as a team, we’ve been disappointed with some of the results [over Christmas]."
"But I hope there are many more games for me," Shaw added. "And many more good results for the team as well."
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Make the push to possibly get on the plane
Shaw was part of the side that shortened Manchester City's lead at the top of the table following their first league defeat to Liverpool with The Red Devils' 3-0 win over Stoke City on Monday night, they will look to shrink it even further with Saturday's clash against Burnley ahead of City's late kick-off against Newcastle United.
Although it is a seemingly uncatchable lead, United are determined to make the most with Phil Jones stating that United could pull off a comeback similar to that of City in the 2011/12 season, but most players in the United squad will be keeping an eye on the summer with the upcoming World Cup in Russia.
Shaw hasn't played for The Three Lions since the defeat in Germany last March, but having played in the last tournament in Brazil back in 2014 Shaw has said he wants to state his place for a selection in Gareth Southgate's squad.
"Really determined," he said on the squad's motivation to kick on in the second-half of the campaign. "We want to make it a really good second half of the season."
"There are so many games coming up and any player that goes into the team is ready," the left-back proclaimed. "There is a lot to play for with the World Cup as well."
"A lot of players want to impress their national managers and, personally," Shaw concluded on his own international ambitions. "I want to try to play as many games as possible to help United and also, if I can, state my case to go to the World Cup."