Manchester United defender Brandon Williams admits he was of jealous of academy stars Mason Greenwood and James Garner.
Williams first went to The Cliff – the club’s academy training base – at the age of seven, and continued to impress before making his first-team debut in 2019.
But the 20-year-old has revealed he was nowhere near among the best players at the academy.
Williams told Man United’s official website: “I went to The Cliff when I was seven and met everyone, some of them are even my closest mates now. Some have stayed and some have gone but I’m still really close with them.
“From then on it’s just been year by year, getting through each year and making sure I get a contract for each year and then obviously getting to be the player I am now.
“My dad took me to my first game at Old Trafford and I just fell in love with it. From then I was just a mad United fan.
“I wasn’t really happy when I went to The Cliff because I was used to being in school and being the best player, but when I went there I wasn’t one of the best players really! I was down there in the bottom group.
“Mason’s always been there [as one of the best players]. James Garner, he was up there as well. There are a few players who are not here as well now.
“I was jealous at the time because they were skilful and everything. I think that’s why I went further back, because I was a striker but now I’m a defender.”
Williams also reflected on his first training session with Manchester United’s first-team squad.
He added: “I was in the youth team squad and at that time there was many great players there so when I’ve gone over it’s been a real shock.
“It’s obviously nerve-wracking but you’re just excited to be there. People don’t really expect anything of you, so you just need to go out there really and show what you can do.
“I was flying in [into tackles] everywhere, I got a few to be honest.
“When you get that opportunity you want to impress and show the manager what you’re like, that’s the best thing you can do.”