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Man Utd must bolster support for Garnacho and Mainoo, says Fernandes

Man Utd must bolster support for Garnacho and Mainoo, says Fernandes

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Fernandes called for an encouraging environment to help academy graduates flourish

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(Reuters) - Manchester United must step up their efforts in providing the necessary support for their young players to thrive within the squad, captain Bruno Fernandes said.

Fernandes called for an encouraging environment to help academy graduates Kobbie Mainoo and Alejandro Garnacho flourish, especially as expectations continue to grow at the Premier League side.

Argentina international Garnacho, 19, has become a regular starter for United, with 44 appearances this season in all competitions. The forward has scored nine goals and registered five assists.

Mainoo, 18, has made 29 appearances for United, scoring three goals and setting up another three. The midfielder also made his debut for England last month.

"They've been doing great things," Fernandes told the club's website, opens new tab. "But, when the team is playing better, it's going to create an even better place for them to (continue their) development.

"I think the team needs to step up in certain moments to also make them feel confident to have their bad moments, their bad games, or even to let them have less pressure on themselves to be the players that have to make the difference in certain moments.

"We all know that at this club that they all expect a lot from the youngest, even more when they come from the Academy, because it's part of the history of the club, and they have a big responsibility on their shoulders."

United have had a mixed season, crashing out of the Champions League in the group stage and are sixth in the league standings. They have, however, reached a second successive FA Cup final.

Manager Erik ten Hag had also urged support for Marcus Rashford on Friday after the 26-year-old forward spoke out against the harsh treatment he has received online this season due to a slump in form.