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Manchester United star Greenwood makes surprising pick for toughest opponent of his career

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The England international has admitted he endured a torrid time against one unheralded left-back in the Premier League last season

Manchester United striker Mason Greenwood has picked Fulham’s Joe Bryan as the toughest opponent of his career to date.

Greenwood has wreaked havoc on defences up and down the country since breaking into United’s senior squad in 2019, while also starring in the Champions League and becoming a full senior England international.

The 19-year-old has pitted his wits against some of the world’s best centre-halves and full-backs during that time, but he claims that Bryan gave him his most difficult examination yet in the Red Devils’ meetings with Fulham last season.

What’s been said?

Pressed to name the hardest opponent he has faced, Greenwood told United’s official website: “That’s a good question. I’ve probably got to say, it might be a surprising one, but do you know [Joe] Bryan, the one for Fulham?

“He allowed me no space, no time on the ball, when we played them home and away. It was one of my most difficult games for us.

“He’s one you probably wouldn’t think I’d say his name, but he was getting tight to me and not giving me much space. He was a good defender and he was probably my toughest challenge.”

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Greenwood v Bryan

Greenwood came up against Bryan for the first time when the Red Devils traveled to Craven Cottage on January 21, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side ultimately emerging with a 2-1 victory thanks to goals from Edinson Cavani and Paul Pogba.

Bryan managed to keep Greenwood quiet on the right wing, and the teenager cut a frustrated figure when he was eventually hauled off for Marcus Rashford in the 85th minute.

The two teams met again at Old Trafford in May, and Cavani doubled his account against the Cottagers with a superb long-range strike to set United on their way to victory with just 15 minutes on the clock.

However, Greenwood produced another subdued display as he struggled to get the better of Bryan, who compounded his misery by heading home a dramatic late equaliser.

Greenwood’s United record

Greenwood has racked up 109 appearances for United across all competitions, scoring 29 goals. The forward has also recorded ten assists, and will be expected to reach even greater heights in 2021-22 as Solskjaer’s team to seek to bring their five-year trophy drought to an end.

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