London 2012

After a nightmare season, Manchester United youngster Tom Cleverley will be desperate to succeed with Team GB this summer.

The 22-year-old enjoyed a bright start to the last campaign but suffered an ankle injury against Bolton in September which halted his progress.

Back from that knock, Cleverley was called up by interim England boss Stuart Pearce for the friendly against Holland in February only to sustain another injury against Ajax to rule him out of the clash.

Fascinating facts:

  • Cleverley initially played for Bradford's youth academy and was taken to Manchester United when he was 12 years old
  • The midfielder has been called up to the senior England squad three times but is yet to make his international debut

Cleverley's fitness problems saw the uncapped player miss out on representing the Three Lions at Euro 2012 but he will be keen to put that disappointment behind him at the Games.

The youngster was a breath of fresh air for United at the start of last season, having obviously benefitted from loan spells at Leicester, Watford and Wigan.

He slotted straight into Sir Alex Ferguson's first team for the first three games of the campaign - a welcome addition following the retirement of midfield maestro Paul Scholes.

Scholes has since returned to the scene and comparisons between Cleverley and the Red Devils veteran are common.

While obviously lacking Scholes' extensive experience, Cleverley fits a similar mould as a naturally attacking midfielder. The youngster boasts impressive movement, energy and a penchant for getting stuck into games.

The former England Under-21 international is also adept at retaining the ball and has shown his talent bossing proceedings from midfield as he keeps the game flowing, while also demonstrating great vision and accuracy.

Cleverley's potential has not been lost on United boss Sir Alex Ferguson, who was desperate to see the midfielder return from his stint on the sidelines last season.

The manager said ahead of United's UEFA Champions League tie with Ajax back in February: "It will be great to get the boy back because I think he's special."

The youngster has been largely tipped as 'one for the future' on the international stage and he will be looking to back up that assessment with a solid performance at the Olympics, while simultaneously trying to shed the injury-prone tag he has unwittingly picked up.

After missing out on silverware with United, Cleverley has already set his sights on a gold medal with Great Britain and, fitness permitting, it's possible he could make a big impact at the Games.

Tom Cleverley

  • DOB: 12/08/89
  • Club: Manchester United
  • Position: Midfielder