English Premiership

Moyes sure of Januzaj stay

2013-10-06 12:01
Adnan Januzaj (AFP)

Sunderland - David Moyes insists he's relaxed over the future of Adnan Januzaj after the teenage midfielder marked his full Premier League debut with both goals as Manchester United fought back to win 2-1 at Sunderland.

Januzaj's representatives have resumed talks over an improved new deal for the 18-year-old, after negotiations stalled following the departure from Old Trafford of Alex Ferguson earlier this year.

The dual nationality Belgian and Albanian prospect's contract expires at the end of the season, with his agent claiming interest from a string of top clubs all over Europe.

However, Moyes is confident Januzaj -- who the FA are aware is also eligible for England on residency grounds -- will pledge his long-term future to the champions, avoiding a repeat of the way the club lost midfielder Paul Pogba to Juventus in 2012.

"I'm not too worried about that (contract situation) because every young boy wants to play for Manchester United," said Moyes.

"If I was a young player, I don't see anywhere better to play, we're a club that promotes young players and I'm a manager who does that.

"If I was the dad of a young boy who was good enough to play at this level, I could see there was a chance of getting in our team. That's part of my remit."

Januzaj scored twice in the space of six minutes after the break to send United back into the top half of the table as the Premier League goes into the international break.

Former Everton manager Moyes added: "I remember giving Wayne Rooney his debut, and Adnan is in that quality, he's a top top player.

"I would have played him two or three weeks ago but for certain reasons with us picking up injuries. I didn't want to go with him too early but today was the right time and it was hard to stop him."

Januzaj has the choice of several countries he can represent although that is unlikely given his stated aim of playing for Albania.

Moyes added: "He's going to be a great talent, a special talent and he showed that with his goals and his ability on the ball.

"We'll keep his feet on the ground -- we had him in the reserves last Monday. We'll make sure he's a very humble boy who works hard, but we know we've got a really exciting talent.

"I think with his international situation there's three or four countries he could play for. There's an eligibility for England that the FA are aware of."

England manager Roy Hodgson later confirmed that he has been watching Januzaj.

When asked if the 18-year-old could one day play for England, Hodgson, who was appearing on BBC1's Match of the Day as a pundit, said: "Yeah down the line if he becomes naturalised or if he becomes a homegrown product.

"He's been with United for a long period of time and of course that discussion will have to be seriously debated before we start naturalising players.

"There's no doubt that he's a real talent and we have our eyes on him but a lot will have to be discussed."

Sunderland took an early lead at the Stadium of Light through midfielder Craig Gardner as they threatened to condemn the Old Trafford club to three consecutive league defeats for the first time in almost 12 years.

But the hosts failed to exploit a shaky start by United, to stretch their Premier League winless run to six months as their seven-season stay in the top flight comes increasingly under threat.

Kevin Ball remains hopeful of succeeding the departed Paolo Di Canio on a permanent basis, despite losing two of his three games in charge.

"I think I've moved the team forward, but I've no idea if there's going to be an announcement on the job soon. I've not spoken to the owner yet and I'll wait to speak to him or someone from the board first," said Ball.

"We know there are areas we've got to work on, and we're disappointed because we did so well in the first half but this game is about fine margins. There's definitely a tinge of disappointment but the team is working hard for each other."


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