David Moyes will be weighing up the merits of the players in his newly inherited Manchester United squad, with some changes in personnel expected this summer. The Scot will surely want to bring in a player or two of his own, and there may well be some exits from Old Trafford over the course of the summer.
One area that Moyes will be looking to strengthen to boost Man United title odds will be on the flanks. Most United fans will agree that the likes of Nani, Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia did not have their best campaigns last season, and it is fair to say that they will be playing for their future in training this summer.
With Wilfried Zaha being added to the Red Devils’ squad this summer, the Premier League champions have another option out wide for next term. The young England star’s addition may well result in one of the other three leaving the club – but which one?
Nani has shown the United faithful glimpses of his ability, but it has been all too seldom. The Portugal international has failed to live up to the star showing of countryman Cristiano Ronaldo, and has at times looked disillusioned and uninterested. Sir Alex used Nani sparingly; Moyes will have to decide what role the unpredictable winger will have in the new United. Football betting sites indicate that Nani will have suitors should he become available this summer.
Ashley Young has been hampered by injuries, and has struggled to recapture the form that he showed immediately after joining the club from Aston Villa. The England international was also blighted by claims of diving last season, and looked to lose confidence. Young can play on either flank, and as a second attacker if needed. This versatility is in his favour, while he is also the most incisive when coming off the flank.
Antonio Valenica’s fall from grace has been startling – the Ecuadorian wideman has went from United’s player of the season to one of the only under-performing players. The South American’s ball control has been awry at times over the last 12 months, while his ability to beat a defender and cross has also waned.
At their best, all three are worthy of a place in the United squad and can be real assets for Moyes. The problem is that none of them have been anywhere near their best of late, and as such the new manager must assess their merits and worth to the club.
Made in Manchester is available for just £5. It includes 30 articles from the country's best football writers about graduates from the Manchester United academy. All profit goes to Trafford Macmillan so please support this fantastic cause.