During this season there has been plenty of talk regarding Manchester United’s interest in Angel Di Maria. I’ll be honest, before last night’s game between Benfica and Liverpool I’d seen very little of Di Maria. On first viewing I was very impressed, I hope he is wearing the red of Manchester next season rather than Benfica.
Following the defeat to Bayern on Tuesday I’ve been in discussion (on my blog) with “Mc D” on the merits of Michael Carrick. The discussion turned to weaknesses and improvements required in our squad when Di Maria’s name cropped up. Di Maria has been mentioned several times to me as a solution for the left wing spot; but as I’d yet see Di Maria with my own eyes I was unable to give a valid opinion. I therefore decided to watch the Liverpool match to see what all the hype is about.
To those that have seen Di Maria will know his strengths and attributes – plenty of pace, a trick or two and he’s not scared to have a shot but what impressed most was his quality of crossing. Benfica easily could have scored two or three goals from his crossing if not for poor heading on the behalf of the Benfica forwards.
Di Maria is very one footed. During the game against Liverpool, Di Maria had the perfect opportunity to cross using his right foot but chose to use his preferred left foot; the cross was poor in comparison. Surprisingly for someone so left footed, Di Maria spent portions of the game playing as a right-winger but I felt he was less effective on the right. On the left Di Maria gave England’s Glen Johnson a torrid time.
In recent seasons we have been fortunate to have two players in Ronaldo and Nani that are relatively comfortable using either foot. This has allowed Fergie to swap the pair during a match if one of them is struggling to dominate the opposition full-back and gives the opposing manger something to think about. With Di Maria and Valencia we have two players that are very one footed which means they are unlikely to swap wings like Nani and Ronaldo have in the past. Do you see this as a problem?
How much will Di Maria cost, £25m-£30? Can Manchester United afford Di Maria?
Would you be happy with the signing of Di Maria or is there a better alternative?
Do Man United need another left winger or are there positions in the team requiring reinforcing more urgently?