At Real Madrid, Angel Di Maria was one of the best players in the world, from being the man of the match in the Champions League final, to beating players with immense pace like Roadrunner in Looney Tunes.
In the summer of 2014 Manchester United proudly announced the signing of Di Maria, it was British record of about £59.7 million. Manchester United were not the only ones astonished by the heroic act of Mr Woodward, as Premier League fans and pundits everywhere dropped their jaws instantly as excitement grew for his next game against Burnley.
The largely anticipated game commenced, it was frustrating to say the least, Sean Dyche’s men served him humbly, as a 0-0 draw was the result that particular afternoon. A positive I can remember is Di Maria, he instantly looked as if he was the ‘real deal’, but as it was his debut nothing too highly was expected. As adjusting from playing away to the likes of Barcelona to playing away to Burnley is physiologically and physically a huge difference.
At home to QPR, he wiped the floor with them, he made Isla the QPR fullback see stars above his head, to some it up in one word would be “mesmerising”.
To follow this a game at home to Everton saw magical pieces of skill light up the old trafford atmosphere, a particular moment United fans love was the exquisite chip against Leicester. With all this planted into his early CV at Manchester things looked bright to say the least, it seemed as if nothing could stop his form and pieces of magic, people everywhere were thinking the same thing “Could he be the next Ronaldo?, Best?or Beckham?”. With the iconic number 7 kindly handed over by Valencia, anything was possible.
Of late Di Maria has been absent in wins over Liverpool, Spurs and Manchester City. And has been benched in the frustrating row of 3 defeats, the last time this happened was 13 years ago, and to rub it in, Chelsea have just won the league.
In the past 3 games we have scored 0 goals, it could be down to lack of creativity, lack of will or even the likely factor of playing 2 teams who ‘ park the bus’ in West Brom and Chelsea.
On Saturday I attended the Manchester United clash against West Brom, again my frustrations shone brightly as I saw a world class player in Di Maria benched, he came on the second half and did absolutely nothing apart from a shot which any player can do. A hint of frustration dominated the mood in the old trafford faithful, expressions such as “Do these guys train on the same pitch?” were often used, down to the many passes Di Maria led astray.
Is this being benched deserved? There are many reasons why and a solution, so lets get out my old friend Squawka and analyse some stats and find out what the problem is.
Firstly Ashley Young, no doubt about it he is in the best form since signing for United, he was the only positive on Saturday retrieving every cross overhit like an obedient Labrador eager to prove a point, can Di Maria compete with that?, he should do.
Secondly the performance in relation to the price, against Arsenal he was sent off and made little impact, it was upsetting. Fernando Torres didn’t produce the performance he was signed for, and we laughed at Chelsea, we cannot let this happen to our amazing Argentine, he needs to liven up, he has a contract, he can do it, we need to stick with him and he’ll hopefully turn good, as United fans we must promise him this.
Di Maria has been slagged off by the media, a lot, is it fair? I don’t think so, of course we expect him to perform to his price value but this season is a rebuild, he hasn’t done that terribly considering, In the Premier League he has made 26 appearances and scored 3 goals, now he wasn’t specifically brought to score goals, that was Falcao’s job, but that’s another story completely, so really in the goals department, no criticism is needed or deserved. He has created 51 chances, that is decent! Also 10 assists, that is pretty god damn amazing in my eyes, considering its his first season. Also an average pass length of 20 metres and with pinpoint accuracy I believe we have more beautiful and eye-catching passes to come.
Now just remember that Liverpool’s Coutinho got in the PFA team of the year, Di Maria has double the assists in less games and a higher pass length, and he doesn’t take shots all bloody day like Coutinho does, its quite funny to see that he has the same amount of assists than Silva and Coutinho put together!
Hopefully this season is just a rebuilding season from the unfortunate reign of David Moyes. The price although astronomical, has the potential to dissolve if Di Maria gets some world class performances in, if we get Champions League next year (which if we don’t is an insult to United fans) Di Maria can light it up like he once done in the colours of white. The colour white is associated with Heaven which means Di Maria came from heaven, Louis Van Gaal’s job now, is to convert that Angel to a Red Devil.