Solskjaer has teased that out and has made Shaw one of a number of players whose careers have progressed on since his appointment. “We’ve encouraged him to get into the final third more,” the manager said with a wry smile after watching his Euro 2020 final goal – although there was no joking about his faith in Shaw when he labelled him United’s second-best finisher after that City strike.
A less obvious muse is the head of Edinson Cavani, whose towering frame adds an obvious reward for Shaw’s trusty, if previously underused, left foot.
“Enjoyment and confidence. For me, they are the two biggest things you need on the pitch. You need that belief in your ability to perform at the highest level. I feel I have that now.”
Enjoyment and confidence Shaw clearly has in abundance given the way he has played over the last season. Those qualities alone would be nothing without potential, of course, and at long last, seven years after he was counted among Europe’s brightest prospects, he looks to have finally realised that quality.
And despite featuring in the Premier League for almost a decade, Shaw only turned 26 on Monday and is still approaching his prime years – so the best could well be yet to come.