I mentioned Wigton lad Jarrad Branthwaite last week, and how he had a difficult Everton debut when he came on against Wolves.

It’s a sign of the boy’s ability and attitude that since then he’s come on against Aston Villa and did really well, then started against Sheffield United and did well again.

His big asset is his reading of the game. He always seems to be ahead of the game mentally. This is what will stand him in good stead.

I think the lad could progress to international honours. That’s how much potential I see in him, and saw even when he was at Carlisle. It’s the mentality. You can’t train that. It’s just a gift that’s given to you.

He’s got an inbuilt confidence. You could see it right away even when he got his debut here. He was unflappable. You’d think he was five years older and had played 100 games. With experience he’ll get even better.

You get lads who don’t really show their ability until they’ve had a few years of full-time training. But with the really good ones, you can usually see it early.

Think of Wayne Rooney, when he burst onto the scene at Everton when he was 16. Or Peter Beardsley, who I played alongside at Carlisle from when he was 18. You could see what he was earmarked for after half a dozen games here.

Matt Jansen: I never saw him as a schoolboy. But Bob Stokoe did, and straight away he saw his potential.

Another Cumbrian, Dean Henderson, from Whitehaven, is still young for a goalkeeper at 23. I’m really impressed with how he’s played for Sheffield United this season. They’ve had a great season and he’s been a big part of it.

For a young keeper, Henderson is so advanced with the way he marshals the defence. He’s another confident lad. A keeper has to have that confidence.

David De Gea has been great for Manchester United. But I think it’s time that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer brought Henderson back from Sheffield and made him Man United’s number one next season. I think he’s ready now. I think he’d grab the chance with both hands.

It’s tricky for De Gea. An outfield player can have bad games and it’s forgotten when they score a goal. A keeper doesn’t get away with mistakes.

With De Gea, I think it comes down to confidence yet again. It looks like his has suffered in the past few years when United have struggled, by their high standards.

It will be interesting to see what signings they make. I still think there’s a big gap between Liverpool, Man City, and the chasing pack.

I can’t say I’m enjoying watching football as much as usual with no fans, the drinks breaks and five substitutions.

Five subs can continue next season: it’s up to the leagues to decide whether it will. I hope it doesn’t. It’s another advantage for the big clubs with the biggest and best squads. I hope it goes back to two halves, with no drinks breaks, three subs, and – as soon as it’s safe – fans in grounds. It’s still a fans’ game. Without them it isn’t football as we know it.