LUKE SHAW has transformed himself into the fittest player at Manchester United. The man who was once derided by Jose Mourinho for being out of shape has topped the rankings regarding overall core fitness.
Shaw and Antonio Valencia have emerged as joint number ones in regular testing at their Carrington training base. And that will stun many who have mocked the United left back for his stocky frame. A Carrington insider revealed: Luke and Antonio are the best when it comes to actual endurance and stamina.
Shaw has been a regular in the gym in his determination to return to action, and has often stayed into the evenings to work on the cardio machines.
Mourinho himself has previously had a dig and questioned Shaw’s conditioning and mental strength.
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In April the United chief said: “I cannot compare the way he trains (with other players), the way he commits, the focus or the ambition. He is a long way behind.”
That came after Mourinho also had a dig at Shaw and Chris Smalling’s mental toughness when they pulled out of a game at Swansea in November 2016.
- The Old Trafford gaffer then warned both players that they had to “learn to play through pain.”
- Shaw, still only 22, has had a nightmare time with injuries since moving from Southampton in 2014.
- He hasn’t started a game since limping out of the draw against Swansea in April with damaged ankle ligaments.
- This season he has made only two appearances from the bench in the EFL Cup, and been an unused substitute on three further occasions.