Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has warned his former club that they should not overly rely on the services of Mason Greenwood at the current stage of his playing career.
The youngster has enjoyed a superb breakthrough season under manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and he has already netted 10 goals in all competitions for the club.
Over the course of the campaign, Greenwood has been in-and-out of the starting lineup and Ferdinand believes the club should carry on with the same routine for the near future.
Speaking on TalkSPORT, Ferdinand gave an example of former England star Michael Owen and cited how the striker was mismanaged with regular gametime during the early stages of his career.
He added to mention the injuries which hampered the career of the former Liverpool and Manchester United man and feels Greenwood should be handed with extra care at the present point of time.
“He’s transitioning well, but I think we have to be careful how much pressure we are putting on his shoulders. He doesn’t need that responsibility yet, he’s too young. He has to be nurtured in the right way,” he told.
“We have to take a good look at how Michael Owen was developed and nurtured as a kid. He was probably mishandled as a young kid coming through.He played far too many games back then.
“Michael would say himself that he probably suffered from certain injuries over the years as he played too many games far too early on in his career. We don’t want that to happen with Mason.”
Solskjaer has definitely tried to limit the playing time for Greenwood and there have been occasions where he has waited until the final 20 minutes of the game before introducing the teenager off the bench.
As such, there is no burden on Greenwood to regularly find the net and he may be treated in the same way for the rest of the campaign, particularly with Odion Ighalo arriving on loan to compete for the striker’s position.