14 Jan, 10:07
Adnan Januzaj kick-started 2015-16 campaign with Louis van Gaal’s backing handing him a few starts. Januzaj reciprocated with brilliant displays, scoring the only goal in Manchester United’s win at Aston Villa. All seemed well before the carpet was pulled from under Januzaj’s feet.
The 20-year-old’s inconsistency saw him return to the bench and eventually join Borussia Dortmund on a season-long loan. Unfortunately, the loan was cut-short after the Red Devils concern for his lack of playing time. “It is a pity he did not show the desire and attitude you need to progress at this age.
-My feeling was that he never was completely with us, that a part of him always stayed in Manchester and he compared everything here with United. We were not able to help him to shake that off, said Thomas Tuchel while explaining why he the Belgian no. 20 played so little in Germany.
It is not the first time that someone is complaining about the Belgian’s attitude. Van Gaal has often questioned his will to compete with his fellow teammates for a starting XI berth. The United no. 11 is in a crucial phase in his career and needs to come out of his comfort zone or risk wasting a talent so promising. My fear is that time opportunities might be running out. The likes of Wilfried Zaha, Luis Nani, Anderson, Shinji Kagawa, Tom Cleverly and Javier Hernández who were initially sent out on loan are no longer Man United players.
On the other side of the spectrum, Adnan’s return could be a blessing in disguise. The starlet who turns 21 next month comes at a time when the 20-time English champions are struggling to break down teams. Manchester United has failed to score in the first half in their last 10 home matches and Januzaj’s creativity would be a bonus. He is left-footed and has got bags of pace and no shortage of trickery which can cause havoc down the right flank. The Old Trafford outfit are in the Europa League as well as the FA Cup and with fixtures coming thick and fast, Januzaj will surely get more than the 159 minutes afforded to him by Dortmund.
He is set to play for the U-21’s against Reading. Will he live to fulfill his potential and become a United great? Will he end up as a failure? Only time will tell. In a world where second chances are so rare, let’s see how Januzaj takes his.