County sign United defender

8 Feb 2024 02:50
Published by: Scott Callan

New arrival: Young United defender Rhys Bennett (Photo credit: Stockport County FC)

YOUNG Manchester United defender Rhys Bennett has joined promotion chasing Stockport County on loan for the remainder of the season.
The 20-year-old centre-half was captain of the United side that won the FA Youth Cup in 2022.
He spent time training with County last season as part of a work experience arrangement between the two clubs.
The Denton-born defender has since stepped up to the U21s side and been a regular in the Premier League 2 competition.
He has also been named in the first-team matchday squad by United boss Erik Ten Hag on three occasions this season.
He now moves to Edgeley Park for the first loan spell of his career, becoming League Two County’s second signing of the January window following the addition of Rico Richards on loan from Aston Villa.
County manager Dave Challinor told the club’s official website: “Rhys is someone we know and who knows us. He spent a couple of months with us last season as part of an arrangement we had with Man United to get some younger players into our environment to train.
“It’s fair to say he made a lasting impression on all of the staff not just in terms of his ability, but as a character and personality in being mature and having an understanding of the game.
“When the opportunity came to bring him back in, especially due to our current situation, it was something we were all keen to do and it’s great to have him back with us.”
Simon Wilson, County’s director of football, added: “This is a good example of how clubs can work effectively with each other. Rhys trained with us last season for a month on work experience, which was part of a wider initiative by Manchester United to give their players some preparation for a loan in senior football.
“The feedback all round from that was excellent, Rhys has kicked on since with United’s first-team but is now available for loan and having had that initial exposure to each other it was an easy win for all parties.
“He gives us good depth across defensive positions. The previous time together gives us all a head start and I’m sure Rhys will settle quickly and contribute to our important remaining games this season.”
It is also 20-yar-old Aston Villa forward Rico Richards’ first loan spell of his career.
Challinor said: “He can play off either side or as an attacking midfield play but we are really confident that he will impact our squad and get you, the supporters, off your seats. We are all excited for him and know that for him personally he is looking forward to making the most of this opportunity.”
Meanwhile, defender Jayden Richardson returned to his parent club Aberdeen in order to complete a move to Colchester United.


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