Saturday, February 4, 2023

French Giants Linked With This Manchester United Attacker: Time To Move On Perhaps?

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Subhayan Dutta
Subhayan used to be the Featured Columnist at The 4th Official. Completely immersed in football and almost all other sports on planet.

French side AS Lyon is eyeing Manchester United youngster Adnan Januzaj this winter, according to reports. And although Manchester United haven’t responded to the claims in any way, the Red Devils should let the Belgium international leave for France, if a good offer comes in.

After starting the Premier League late owing to injury, Januzaj has finally settled into the groove in a struggling Sunderland side. The Black Cats are experiencing all kinds of problems at the moment, both on and off the field and there is no way they could afford to keep Januzaj after this season. On the other hand, United have numerous players like Lingard, Marcus Rashford, Henrik Mkhitaryan and Anthony Martial, who could play on the wing which is Januzaj’s preferred position. Hence, his chances at United aren’t looking good.

The Belgian broke into the scene in the 2013-14 season with Manchester United. His appearances became quite scarce since that season and only David Moyes has been able to utilise the winter to the fullest. He has played 47 times under Moyes, where he has scored 5 goals and assisted 7 times.

He was also a saving grace during the end of Louis Van Gaal’s managerial stint at United, where he played a crucial role on the wide areas, showing great composure on the ball and the vision for incisive passing. His brief loan spell at Borussia Dortmund didn’t quite work as expected.  Although Thomas Tuchel handed him 12 appearances for the German giants, he could produce nothing more than three assists.

However, there has been a constant buzz among critics about how big a talent he could be. At 21, Januzaj has shown some brilliant passing and movements off the ball and it is only the lack of break in a big club that is stopping him from unleashing himself. Hence, Lyon could be an ideal destination for him.

Gone are the days when Lyon dominated the French Ligue. After Paris Saint-Germain’s dominance, the once French giants have lost both their status and form in the domestic league. They now struggle to qualify for the Champions League and the departure of stars like Benzema, Toulalan, Lisandro Lopez and others have now given way to the club relying more on academy products.

Januzaj’s biggest challenge in the Premier League has been his physicality. His lean figure has often stopped him from outmuscling his opponents and he has to rely more on speed and timing. A move to Lyon would definitely grow him as a player and provide a springboard for the lad to bounce back in the Premier League as a formidable threat.

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