Gary Neville doesn’t think Rasmus Hojlund can be Man Utd ‘great’ as Carragher asks ‘what does he do?’

Will Ford
Manchester United striker Rasmus Hojlund
Rasmus Hojlund has endured a difficult first season for Man Utd.

Gary Neville doesn’t think Manchester United star Rasmus Hojlund will ever be considered a “great striker” as fellow Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher asked “what does he do?”

Hojlund – who moved to Old Trafford from Atalanta for £72m in the summer – enjoyed a Premier League purple patch at the turn of the year, scoring seven goals in six Premier League games, but has found the net on just one occasion besides.

He was as bad as Casemiro against Crystal Palace and a report on Monday claimed several of his Red Devils teammates are ‘reluctant to pass the ball to him’ as they are ‘unconvinced’ by his ability.

‘I wish he was learning’

Neville believes he has the quality to “become an Ollie Watkins” for United, but doesn’t believe he can become one of the Premier League greats.

Speaking on Sky Sports, Neville said: “I think this is a kid that needs persevering with. I looked at Ollie Watkins before. He’s not going to become a Haaland or an Aguero, one of the great strikers in Premier League history, I don’t think.

“But he can become an Ollie Watkins. You can look at someone like that, I think I can get to 20 goals.

“I wish he was the second striker this season. I wish he was learning, I did the interview with Erik ten Hag last week. He mentioned Harry Kane. If he was learning off Kane now or playing with Kane, I think you’d see a completely different player.

“Secondly, he’s 21 years of age. He’s a little bit scruffy in his work is his first season in the Premier League, and he reminds me a little bit of Darwin Nunez. He reminds me a little bit of Nicholas Jackson.

READ MORE: Man Utd ‘reluctance’ to pass to Hojlund laid bare in stats but he beats Haaland

“When you look at them, they’re projects. Manchester United, this moment in time is their only striker. Manchester United is the only striker in the club. Forget Anthony Martial. He’s not been there for years.

“If you look at Nunez and if you look at Hojlund, the really interesting thing for me is that that shot conversion is up 22% so when he actually gets chances, he’s actually better than Jackson and Nunez.

“Now you might say, okay, but I think that’s something really to work with. The expected goals at the bottom, he’s only expected to score 7.4 goals.

“The service in delivery into him is poor you look at Nunez and Jackson, Jackson, they’re at 16.3 and 17, double,” he said.

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‘What does he do?’

Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher retaliated to Neville’s comments by questioning whether United can be happy with Hojlund not being one of the best players in the Premier League, stating: “Is that good enough?

“Is that good enough for Manchester United? I mean, I feel sorry for Holland a little bit, but I do look at it and think, what is, what’s his trick? What does he do?

“I know he’s young, and I actually think he’s been brought in maybe a couple of years too soon.”

Neville offered Hojlund further leeway by pinning the blame for his lack of goals on his fellow forwards.

“This is the hardest introduction, to be honest,” Neville added. “To do for a young striker into a struggling team, interchanging team. We talk a lot of Manchester about the change in defence, but there’s been a lot of changes in attack as well.

“This is a kid who doesn’t know when the ball is going to come into the box. He’s not being serviced. He’s not getting the delivery into the box when he wants it. The inconsistency of players around him is affecting him.”