Teenager Max Taylor makes Man...


Teenager Max Taylor makes Man United squad after cancer recovery

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Max Taylor has received his first call up into Manchester United's senior squad, at the end of a year that began with him undergoing chemotherapy.

The 19-year-old spent 11 months away from the game after being diagnosed with testicular cancer, only returning to training for the first time in September.

Taylor has appeared twice for United's Under 23s side since then, with the defender now included in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's squad for Thursday evening's Europa League encounter with Astana.

Having made his comeback in the Under-23s win over Swansea City last month, Taylor then came off the bench for Neil Wood’s team in a 3-0 win over Sunderland at Old Trafford last Friday.

Taylor told the official United website that he was overjoyed at the call-up after a tough period off the pitch.

“Obviously, Ole has given quite a few of us the opportunity to travel with the team and, hopefully, a few of us will get a game.

“The position I was in this time last year, I was in my first few weeks where I had chemotherapy, I wouldn’t have thought, a year on, I’d be travelling with the first team.

“It doesn’t matter what the environment is like, just being out there is massive. It’s been a dream since I can remember ever kicking a ball – being a Manchester United first-team player.”

Solskjaer and his squad are making a 6,000-mile round-trip to the Kazakh capital Nur-Sultan for the game, with United top of their Europa League Group L table.

United beat Astana 1-0 at Old Trafford on September 19th in their opening game in this year's competition, before a goalless draw at AZ Alkmaar, a 1-0 win at Partizan Belgrade, and a comfortable 3-0 win over the Serbian opposition at home.

The Manchester outfit, winners of the Europa League under José Mourinho in 2017, drew 3-3 with Sheffield United on Sunday afternoon.

The Astana game will kick-off at the much earlier time of 3.50 pm Irish time on Thursday afternoon, given the time difference with Kazakhstan.

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