Explained: Why is Tom Huddlestone playing (and scoring) for Manchester United Under-21s?

Tom Huddlestone is being talked after he scored for Manchester United. But not their first team. No, 37-year-old Huddlestone was on the scoresheet for Manchester United’s Under-21s in their latest Premier League 2 game.

They beat crosstown rivals Manchester City 2-1 at Leigh Sports Village, and the Red Devil’s U21 manager Travis Binnion’s has been benefitting from Huddlestone’s lasting experience on the pitch since 2022.

Many supporters are curious to see the 37-year-old still turning out for the Red Devils on a regular basis. So exactly why is he still playing and what is his role with the club?

explained: why is tom huddlestone playing (and scoring) for manchester united under-21s?

Huddlestone played 146 times for Hull City across two spells (Image credit: Getty Images)

After departing Championship outfit Hull City back in the summer of 2022, Huddlestone was at something of a footballing crossroads.

Having made just twelve appearances for the Tigers across the 21/22 campaign, four of those as a starter, the former Derby County man was offered the chance at a new role with Manchester United.

Much like Paul McShane had done in the past, Huddlestone was brought in as a player-coach to help aid the development of the Under-21s at Old Trafford.

Jay Spearing is currently taking up a similar role at rivals Liverpool, as he looks forward to the next stage of his career, whilst also continuing to turn out for his boyhood club.

explained: why is tom huddlestone playing (and scoring) for manchester united under-21s?

Huddlestone played for eight years at White Hart Lane, scoring eight goals (Image credit: Getty Images)

Boasting stars such as Charlie McNeill, Willy Kambwala and Shola Shoretire, the Red Devils academy needed an experienced head to help coach those currently progressing through the ranks and what better way to do that than on the pitch?

Having already featured seven times for the club at Under-21 level this season, the ex-Spurs midfielder is slowing down in his work rate on the pitch and has dreams of one day achieving a managerial job of his own.

“I think one that really clicked my coaching ideas into a process was Marco Silva,” said the former Wolves loanee back in 2022.

“I only had him for five or six months at Hull but I thought about the detail he went into around the training pitch, the analysis videos before and after every training session and definitely the matches. Maybe that coincided with my age at the time but I thought he sparked an excitement from a coach’s standpoint in me.”

More Manchester United stories

Manchester United plot next key appointment from Dan Ashworth wishlist

Manchester United ‘make contact’ over transfer for Bayern Munich wonderkid

Cristiano Ronaldo is ‘selfish’ – Wayne Rooney explains why Lionel Messi is the GOAT

News Related

OTHER NEWS

FA confident that Man Utd starlet will pick England over Ghana

Kobbie Mainoo made his first start for Man Utd at Everton (Photo: Getty) The Football Association are reportedly confident that Manchester United starlet Kobbie Mainoo will choose to represent England ... Read more »

World Darts Championship draw throws up tricky tests for big names

Michael Smith will begin the defence of his world title on the opening night (Picture: Getty Images) The 2024 World Darts Championship is less than three weeks away and the ... Read more »

Pioneering flight to use repurposed cooking oil to cross Atlantic

For the first time a long haul commercial aircraft is flying across the Atlantic using 100% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). A long haul commercial flight is flying to the US ... Read more »

King meets world business and finance figures at Buckingham Palace

The King has met business and finance leaders from across the world at a Buckingham Palace reception to mark the conclusion of the UK’s Global Investment Summit. Charles was introduced ... Read more »

What Lou Holtz thinks of Ohio State's loss to Michigan: 'They aren't real happy'

After Ohio State’s 30-24 loss to Michigan Saturday, many college football fans were wondering where Lou Holtz was. In his postgame interview after the Buckeyes beat Notre Dame 17-14 in ... Read more »

Darius Slay wouldn't have minded being penalized on controversial no-call

Darius Slay wouldn’t have minded being penalized on controversial no-call No matter which team you were rooting for on Sunday, we can all agree that the officiating job performed by ... Read more »

Mac Jones discusses Patriots future after latest benching

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) Quarterback Mac Jones remains committed to finding success with the New England Patriots even though his future is up in the air following ... Read more »
Top List in the World