Manchester United started the 2019-20 Premier League season strongly by beating Chelsea by four goals to nil at Old Trafford with goals coming from Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and debutant Daniel James. What has happened since that match day?
The club has failed to breakdown teams that have played in a compact and defensive way which has cost them more points in the current campaign.
Andreas Pereira, Jesse Lingard, and the young talented Angel Gomes were tipped to fight for the ‘number 10’ role this campaign with Juan Mata coming in at some point with experience, but have United fans been convinced at all? Creativity! Yes, a strong ‘anti-virus’ that will likely break down a compact and defensive team. None of these players mentioned have really made a great deal from the attacking midfield area.
Jesse Lingard has started 9 out of 18 games played for the club in the league this season but has managed no goal or even an assist. The attacking midfielder has only created one big change in the games he has played this season, which is not a good record for a player of his caliber.
Andreas Pereira, a versatile player has been deployed at the attacking midfield role in recent times. With 14 games started out of his total 18, the Brazil international has managed 1 goal and 3 assists all season in the Premier League, creating four big chances as well but has still failed to change the fans’ opinion about him.
Juan Mata and Angel Gomes have barely had a chance to get impress Ole Gunnar Solksjaer with the manager citing consistent injuries as a part of the latter’s lack of game time this season. With an average of 37 minutes per game in the league, Mata has had no hand in any of Man Utd‘s goals so far.
“Of course we want him back scoring goals and making assists, there is no one who runs as much as Jesse, he is a great trigger in the pressing, a bubbly character.” This was Solskjaer’s opinion leaping to the defense of his attacker.
Creativity is what this young and energetic Manchester side is craving for and the answers to that maybe James Maddison or Jack Grealish.
The Leicester City midfielder has found his feet this season in the attacking role having been directly involved in nine goals for the Foxes. A threat from set-pieces and also a long-distance shooter, Maddison has never been short of creative ideas. His ability to squeeze passes to the forwards is a plus and a key to his success.
Jack Grealish on the other hand, has had a hand in 11 of Aston Villa‘s goals in the league this season, scoring six and providing five assists. As if that is not enough to make him a target, his display at Old Trafford in the 2-2 draw with the Red Devils convinced many of his qualities.
That was my favorite goal for a long long time. Scoring at Old Trafford… I’ve always wanted to play at Old Trafford,’ Grealish told Sky Sports. ‘I’ve played there before in a reserve cup final but it’s not the same when it’s like that. That’s obviously my favorite ground in the Premier League. These comments shouldst least give United some urge over other clubs pursuing the lad.
At age 23 and 24 respectively, Maddison or Grealish will both play for a long time and should be able to gel with the Manchester United squad should any be signed.
A great addition it could be but for now, the Red Devils continue to fight with the available squad as they look to finish in the top four.