Luke Shaw admitted the prospect of signing a new five-year deal at Manchester United may have seemed “impossible” until recently following a chequered spell with the club.
The left-back’s contract was due to expire next summer and it seemed he was on the brink of exiting Old Trafford only a few months ago after yet more public criticism from manager Jose Mourinho.
Shaw, though, has been a regular under the Portuguese this season and has decided to commit his long-term future to the club he joined from Southampton for a fee thought to be £30million in June 2014.
The public flak led to reports of Shaw thinking about leaving the club, but his improved form this season saw him earn an England recall last month after missing out on Gareth Southgate’s World Cup squad.
“I think I knew how important this season was going to be, especially the start of it coming in the last year of (my contract),” he said.
“I’m really happy to be in this form and over the pre-season I was working very hard to make sure that I gave myself the best opportunity to be able to put myself in the team, and thankfully I have done that.
“I can see the team that we have here. We have an amazing group of players and the talent we have is scary, there are a lot of young lads that are hungry for trophies.”
Mourinho had warm words of encouragement for Shaw, saying: “Luke fully deserves this contract. He understood his development process, he has worked really hard at every level and he always believes in himself which is a great attribute to have.
“Luke is still young and is improving all the time and he must feel very proud of himself. I am delighted that we are keeping such a talented young English player with a bright future ahead of him.”