Ravel Morrison offered a lifeline by Swedish side Ostersunds FK

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Morrison pens deal with Ostersunds FK

Former Manchester United midfielder Ravel Morrison has joined Ostersunds FK after a successful trial with the Swedish outfit. The 26-year-old - who came through the ranks at United before joining West Ham in 2012 - has spent the previous three seasons at Lazio, but joined up with Ian Burchall's side in a recent training camp in Marbella after struggling for game time in Italy.

Morrison, who is widely known as a player with a huge potential but a poor attitude, will be hoping that this left-field switch to Sweden will be the move to reignite his career. The standard of the Allsvenskan is incredibly poor compared to that of Serie A, so he should easily boss it out there which will in turn build his confidence back up after an underwhelming time at the Stadio Olimpico.

Having played in the same Manchester United youth team as the likes of Jesse Lingard and Paul Pogba, Ravel Morrison's career has taken a completely different turn to the current Red Devils starlets, with the midfielder counting seven different clubs on his CV in the previous eight seasons. It's clear that Morrison has bags of ability, and hopefully in Scandinavia he can start to get his head down and push on as there's still plenty of time for him to return to the Premier League.

Lazio move unsuccessful

After his contract with West Ham expired, Morrison began training with Lazio and signed for the Italian outfit in July of 2015. The move got everybody talking as before the switch to Italy Morrison's entire career had been played out in England. Many believed that an outside-the-box switch to a completely different country, away from the negative influences that had so far restricted his progression in England was exactly what the young midfielder needed to really kick on, but sadly it wasn't to be.

Morrison made just four appearances for Lazio and found himself loaned out to both QPR - the club he had enjoyed a brief spell with a year prior - and Mexican Liga MX side Atlas. The switch back to Loftus Road was unsuccessful for Morrison, however in Mexico he managed to complete a decent run of games - scoring three goals in 18 appearances for the Central American side.

Upon his return to Italy last summer, it was clear that Morrison's contract at Lazio - which was due to expire this July - would not be renewed. The 26-year-old was granted permission to train with prospective clubs last month and linked up with Ostersunds for their pre-season training camp in Spain after the club's director, David Webb, got in touch with his agent. Morrison impressed in training and was offered a contract by the club. He'll now look to help Ostersunds in their quest to clinch their first ever Allsvenskan league title when the season starts next month.

Morrison Lazio
Morrison made just four appearances for Lazio in three years.

Will this finally be a turning point for the 26-year-old?

Ravel Morrison has gained praise from some of football's biggest names over the years, with former United boss Sir Alex Ferguson a particularly huge fan of the midfielder. In a quote taken from his 2015 book, Leading, Ferguson says:

"Sadly there are examples of players who have similar backgrounds to Giggs or Cristiano Ronaldo who, despite enormous natural talent, just aren’t emotionally or mentally strong enough to overcome the hurts of their childhood and their inner demons.

"Ravel Morrison might be the saddest case. He possessed as much natural talent as any youngster we ever signed, but he kept getting into trouble. It was painful to sell him to West Ham in January 2012 because he could have been a fantastic player. But, over a period of several years, the problems off the pitch continued to escalate and so we had little option but to cut the cord."

Rio Ferdinand also said that Morrison was the 'best player who never fulfilled his potential', so why is it exactly that Morrison isn't still tearing it up in the Premier League alongside the players he grew up playing with?

It all boils down to the player's attitude; he's been given plenty of opportunities to make something of his career, with both United and West Ham keen to transform him into the world class player he was destined to be, but with distractions off the field evidently taking priority over progression on it, Morrison has been left with little options.

Clearly a player of so much promise, it would be a shame to see Morrison pass up yet another opportunity to get his career back on track. Hopefully, at a club with much more humble surroundings and a young English manager willing to get the best out him, we will see the 26-year-old finally start to push on. If he doesn't, then it's hard to see another route back into the game for the man once dubbed by Sir Alex Ferguson as 'better than Ryan Giggs'.


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