Middlesbrough man Paddy McNair is just 26 but told Northern Irish media today (via Sussex Live) that it is “madness” to think that he has been involved in the organization of his country for so long and that he could have even better times ahead of him as a footballer.
Looks like it’s been a lifetime since the midfielder made his debut at former Manchester United in 2014 and after spending two years at Old Trafford he decided to seek new pasture in pursuit regular action.
He ended up at a struggling Sunderland, where he managed to make 28 appearances and score seven goals for the Black Cats before being finally cleared to join Boro.
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It was since moving to Middlesbrough that he finally started to thrive. With more than 100 games to his name and nine goals, he has become an important member of the team and a vital cog in the middle of the field.
His emergence as a solid player in the EFL also led him to secure regular action for his country. With 49 appearances for his side, he could win his 50th cap in the current international break – and McNair believes the best is yet to come.
Talking about his future and career in Northern Ireland, he said: “Everyone always says how fast your career is going and it definitely is. I’ve been in the team for seven years so it’s crazy.
“I remember my first selection very well. I’m only 26, so I feel like my best years are ahead of me in a Northern Ireland shirt.
McNair has become a decent midfield option for Middlesbrough since leaving Sunderland. There were flashes of his talent for Man United, but he was still unlikely to make the starting XI at Old Trafford. His search for football took him to Sunderland through a bad time in their history but he eventually settled in Boro.
This has allowed him to become a better player and he is now a valuable option for them in midfield. There is no doubt that he still has a lot of years left in him, so he could definitely get better and better too.