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Manchester United academy star Zidane Iqbal names his football idol

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Zidane Iqbal has picked out the one player who has most inspired him on his Manchester United journey so far — former Arsenal star Mesut Ozil.

The 18-year-old United youngster continues to forge his reputation as part of the famed Old Trafford academy.

A regular in the club’s U18 side, the central midfielder was last season handed his debut in Premier League 2 — as other would-be graduates such as Shola Shoretire and Anthony Elanga shone on the first-team stage, as the campaign was brought to a close.

With a first name like Zidane, the gifted Iqbal caught the attention of social media users last month when he was captured on video channelling his inner David Beckham.

Indeed, the academy player sent pulses racing with a sensational free-kick worthy of the United great and former England captain himself.

Despite those two natural links, however, it’s another former Real Madrid star who Iqbal points to as a man who has inspired him most to this point; along with his family.

Speaking to the MUFC website, he explained his choice of idol: “Mesut Ozil, because he’s a Muslim like me. Just seeing another Muslim footballer is a good thing.

“The journey is different for everyone, and I can tell you it’s not easy. It’s like a rollercoaster, up and down. You just have to enjoy the ride and whatever’s meant to be is meant to be.”

Iqbal, whose father was born in Pakistan and mother is Iraqi, added: “I come from such a hard-working family. My parents are always working hard, my brother, my grandparents.

“When we came to this country, they all inspired me to give my best at everything I do.”

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