You may not know much about United’s youngster Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, but United have known him for awhile. The Manchester native has been with the club since he was a teen, and made his debut for the Under-21 side when he was just 16 years old.
CBJ Made his Premier League debut as a substitute in an November match against West Brom, starting the discussion about if the injury depleted United would use Borthwick-Jackson in the starting lineup anytime soon.
Borthwick-Jackson was added to United’s UCL roster ahead of their final group stage match against Wolfsburg, and was needed in an emergency. Darmian came off with an injury during during the first half, and the 18-year old was once again forced into action.
Here’s what you need to know about Borthwick-Jackson:
1. He is From Manchester
Every boy dreams of growing up and playing for his hometown club. Borthwick-Jackson is from Manchester, and his been with the club since his youth league days. He’s been on the English football scene for a while now, making appearances for England in U-16 and U-17 levels. Kenny Swain, who coaches those teams, had nothing but positive things to say about him.
“He was in our sights early on. He had a great height and presence from a young age, which automatically stood him in good stead.”
CBJ attended Saint Anthony’s Catholic College in Urmston, along with other budding English soccer stars Ravel Morrison and Tyler Blackett.
2. He Can Play Left Back or Center Back
Borthwick-Jackson has received praise from his coaches at all levels. One of his biggest praises is his skill on the ball, which makes him a flexible play considering his size. He’s probably not ready to play in the middle, but CBJ should see action at left back at the senior level.
United U-21 coach Warren Joyce highlighted one of his strongest suits, which has been his ability to learn and develop his skills.
“Cameron has been excellent this season,” said Joyce. “He has gone from strength to strength.”
3. He Replaced Marcus Rojo in His Debut
Borthwick-Jackson made his Premier League debut November 7, in United’s 2-0 win over West Brom. He came on the 76th minute after an injury to Marcus Rojo. Van Gaal said he put him in the lineup “without any fear,” and praised him on his performance.
Rojo had briefly returned to the lineup, but a different injury has kept him off the field. Rojo suffered a dislocated shoulder during training, and is expected to miss the next few months. An extended absence from Rojo could lead to more playing time for Borthwick-Jackon.
4. Borthwick-Jackson is Needed Due to Injuries
Injuries have been adding up for Manchester United this season, and it’s led to some early experience for some of their youth players. Borthwick-Jackson is the latest to join the crop of United youngsters, joining Paddy McNair, Jesse Lingard, and five others to make their debuts this season.
With injuries piling up, Borthwick-Jackson may need to stay on United’s roster for longer than expected. He came on in United’s UCL clash with Wolfsburg for Matteo Darmian, and the status his injury is not yet known.
5. He’s Led The United Youth Squads to Consecutive Milk Cup Titles
CBJ had an impressive youth career, highlighted by consecutive wins for United at the Milk Cup. More formally titled the Northern Ireland Youth Soccer Tournament, Borthwick-Jackson was an important piece of the roster that won the title in 2013 and 2014.
He was on the winning team in 2013, but did not register a goal. He scored twice in the 2014 run, including the game-winner in the tournament final over Vendee.