Perhaps the opening game of the 2018 Premier League season will be remembered as the time when Luke Shaw finally found his way at Manchester United, with the 23-year-old scoring his first senior goal in a 2-1 win over Leicester City.
An injury suffered in 2015 and a contentious relationship with manager Jose Mourinho have left Shaw, signed from Southampton in 2014 as a promising teenager, looking like a failure at the club, having made just 43 league appearances in his first four seasons with the side.
“It’s annoying for me to say I need to prove myself,” Shaw said in the pre-season. “But I know what I can do and that’s why I’m still here. I’m sure that’s what the manager thinks.
“I don’t think I would still be involved right now if the manager didn’t believe in me. I’ve had a good chat with him and I look forward to the new season and getting back to my best.”
Shaw was given his chance from the start in Friday’s Premier League opener against the Foxes and came good in the 83rd minute.
Paul Pogba had given Manchester United the lead early on from the penalty spot.
But a hard-fought contest was still well in the balance when Shaw’s first touch took him past Ricardo Pereira in the box and he was able to slide in and slip home a second for the home side.
It proved to be a vital goal, with Jamie Vardy’s stoppage-time strike leaving Shaw’s goal as the winner for Manchester United on the night.
1 – Luke Shaw’s goal was his first for Manchester United, on what is his 67th appearance for the club in all competitions. Rewarded. pic.twitter.com/ZWjBu5M9n0
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 10, 2018
Manchester United return to action on Aug. 19 with a matchup against Brighton before an early-season showdown with Tottenahm eight days later.