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‘Real statement of intent’ – Blackpool join chase for Manchester United starlet: The verdict



This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict‘ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…

Blackpool have registered an interest in young Manchester United right-back Ethan Laird, as reported by The Sun on Sunday (15th August, page 63).

The 20-year-old has been a target of Russell Martin’s at his new club Swansea City, after the full-back spent a successful loan spell with MK Dons.

Laird has tasted the rigours of first-team football with the Premier League giants, making his competitive debut in a 2-1 defeat to Astana in the Europa League.

Making 24 appearances for the Buckinghamshire-based club in the second half of last season, Laird provided four assists, proving to be a competent defensive option, whilst displaying his attacking tendencies on the League One stage.

Here, we asked three of the writers here at FLW to share their thoughts on the potential move…

Toby Wilding

It looks as though this could be a rather useful signing for Blackpool should they manage to get it done.

With Jordan Gabriel now back at Nottingham Forest following his loan move at Bloomfield Road last season, right-back is a position the Seasiders could do to strengthen in the final couple of weeks of the window.

Bringing in Laird from Manchester United would ensure they do that, and secure them the services of a promising young player, who after his loan spell at MK Dons last season, does seem to be ready for the step up to the Championship in the coming campaign.

Indeed, with Swansea already seemingly some way down the line with a move for Laird that would reunite him with Russell Martin, it would be a seriously impressive business for Blackpool to get done as they look to re-establish themselves as a potential contender in the Championship.

With that in mind, it does seem as though those in charge at Bloomfield Road ought to be working hard to try and get a deal done here one way or another.

Chris Thorpe

Definitely – this would be a real statement of intent from Blackpool if they pulled it off against the odds. Unfortunately for them it appears that he is heading to Swansea City but you can see why they would want a player like Laird.

He is still only 20 and has already shown a level of maturity that is far beyond his years as a professional.

He impressed many during his loan spell with Milton Keynes and I think long term he can be a great player if he continues to improve.

Sadly the Seasiders will probably miss out on him but I’m sure they will have some other targets lined up as alternatives.

Ned Holmes

This would be a fantastic signing for Blackpool, who are yet to properly replace Jordan Gabriel.

The Nottingham Forest loanee was a key player in the promotion push but has returned to his parent club leaving Neil Critchley short of quality at that position.

Laird impressed while on loan at MK Dons last season and you feel he would suit the step up to the Championship.

The issue for Blackpool is that Swansea City are in pursuit of the 20-year-old with Russell Martin keen on a reunion and the Welsh club frontrunners.

If the Tangerines can sneak in front of them then it would be a real coup.

Quiz: Do you remember which player scored Blackpool’s first goal in each of the last 15 seasons?

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Article title: ‘Real statement of intent’ – Blackpool join chase for Manchester United starlet: The verdict

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