Man Utd’s attack: Kittens under the tiger’s skin
3 mins read

Man Utd’s attack: Kittens under the tiger’s skin

Radamel Falcao (played 15 Premier League matches, scored four goals, had five assists)

The possibility of Man Utd activating the clause allowing them to buy Falcao outright is getting smaller, inversely proportional to the growing disappointment that the Colombian striker creates.

With only four goals in the Premier League since the beginning of the season, it would be unbelievable if Falcao convinced Man Utd to spend about $76 million in transfer fees and then forced him to pay $228,000 weekly salary to buy out a 28-year-old striker.

Van Gaal gave Falcao as many chances as he could, but he continually disappointed him.

Besides his scoring performance, Falcao’s contribution to the overall gameplay is also very limited, considering the average rate of one shot per match that he launches in the direction of the goal.

A serious injury in Monaco a year ago seems to have significantly eliminated Falcao’s courage, confidence, strength and goal-scoring instinct – factors that once helped him be considered the third best attacking player.

Falcao also has problems coordinating with other strikers.

With 15 Premier League appearances since the beginning of the season – a number that could have been much larger if he hadn’t taken some time off due to injury, Falcao has no shortage of opportunities to prove his ability.

Robin van Persie (22 matches, nine goals, two assists)

Man Utd's attack: Kittens under the tiger's skin

Van Persie is 31 years old and is on the decline after an impressive first season with Man Utd.

Van Persie’s performance chart in England shows that 2012 and 2013 were the years when the striker reached his peak.

In the remaining years, Van Persie’s best achievements are only 18, 12, 11, 11 and 9 respectively (in the current season).

On Van Persie’s good day, he is the most dangerous assassin.

In the last seven matches, Van Persie has only scored one goal – the opening goal in an easy 3-1 win over bottom team Leicester.

Psychology is another problem for Van Persie, and it existed even when he was led by Van Gaal – his compatriot coach and the teacher he was very close to and admired in the Netherlands.

Wayne Rooney (20 matches, eight goals, four assists)

Man Utd's attack: Kittens under the tiger's skin

Rooney will come to a point where he no longer has the patience to comply with coach Van Gaal’s wishes and rediscover him in the middle of the field in his left-field role – central midfielder.

The problem with Rooney, it seems, is that he became part of Van Gaal’s project to improve the playing style for Man Utd.

But reality shows that Rooney is wasted in the middle of the field.

The numbers support Carragher’s view.

Rooney is a born attacker, hungry to score and win.

James Wilson (11 games, one goal, no assists)

The talent of this 19-year-old player is undeniable, and what Wilson is showing on the Man Utd first team deserves encouragement.

Man Utd's attack: Kittens under the tiger's skin

Wilson (No. 49) cannot immediately take the place of seniors like Falcao or Van Persie.

It would be better if Wilson were loaned to a First Division team (Championship) to find opportunities to play regularly, score goals and compete for promotion, thereby gaining experience and the ability to cope.

In the current Man Utd first team, Wilson is mainly used as a catalyst to encourage Van Gaal, hurting the pride of the two top strikers on the team, Falcao and Van Persie.


Premier League match played



The shot hit the goal

The shot missed the goal

Home team’s winning percentage on the field

Home team’s winning percentage when not on the field

Robin Van Persie








Radamel Falcao








James Wilson








Wayne Rooney








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