Former Arsenal forward Ian Wright has urged Donny van de Beek to leave Manchester United suggesting that it is never going to work for the Dutchman at the club. It could be bitterness coming from the former Arsenal player, but there is some truth to this.
Van de Beek was signed from Ajax in a move worth £35 million in the summer of 2020 but after his first season at the club and his lack of appearances in the second season, it seems that his time at the club could be over. This would be a shame as the player is capable of playing some good football but there are more things at work here, not just that the player has a lack of minutes on the pitch.
Many seem to assume that Van de Beek is rivalling the likes of Scot McTominay, Nemanja Matic and Fred for a place in the midfield, but as a player with the speciality of attacking, he is actually rivalling the likes of Bruno Fernandes, Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard – which is why he’s not playing many minutes at the moment.
Of course, this could all change if the midfielder was given regular minutes and he impressed the manager and coaches at the club, which could give him a chance to stake his claim in the team but realistically, when he has played he has never set the world alight, but that said, he has not been give the chance to either. When a player plays few minutes, they need to be able to offer everything without the chance of mistakes.
During the summer, Van de Beek’s representatives were approached by Everton, which was something that never happened as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer turned down any chance of it happening, which suggested the player had a part to play this season – but has not been given many chances so far. Toffees director Marcel Brands will probably make another move for the player in January and the same could be said for Newcastle United, who will have financial might once again.
Wright spoke to Optus Sport about Van de Beek where he spoke about the player from his days at Ajax to now, suggesting that he does not fit the way that United play football. It kind of has some truth to it though. United bought a great player at a competitive rate but it seems clear that he was not the player that Solskjaer wanted, therefore he has been closed out, which seems unfair – it if is true. Wright’s comments were reported by The Mirror, with him saying:
“The way that Ajax play with their possession football, the way that he’s grown up in that Ajax academy knowing how to make moves off of a team that are able to continually hold the ball, is totally different to how Manchester United play.
“It’s baffling to me that he went to Manchester United. It’s not like they’re going to change the way they play for Donny van de Beek to play. The signing was wrong.
“At this stage, I’ve not seen him play more than three games on the spin for Manchester United, it’s gone wrong. He has got to get out of there because it’s not going to work for him at Manchester United.
“He is not going to get the opportunity to play, and he is somebody that should be playing because he is a fantastic player.”
Wright’s comments seem to come from the recent match which saw an annoyed Van de Beek after he was not brought on the pitch, but Fred was. The Dutchman showed his discontent, which is natural, especially when he will have been watching Fred from the sidelines, a player that has not exactly got what United need in his locker. After that match, Solskjaer made a comment suggesting that he did not need ‘sulkers’ in his squad, saying:
“If we’re going to be successful together, we know that we need positive energy. We can’t have sulkers, but Donny has never affected his team-mates negatively.
“As soon as I see players affecting the team negatively that’s a different scenario and I’ll probably be a little bit firmer.”
Wright then concluded what he was saying, commenting on the ‘ridiculous interview’ that Solskjaer had with the media, saying:
“We’re talking about somebody who’s not even had a chance and he’s obviously been very professional about what he’s doing, and he’s [Solskjaer’s] saying if he sees anything different, what, he’s going to blow him out? Ridiculous interview.”
It seems that it is only a matter of time before Manchester United and Donny van de Beek part ways. With Everton having interest in the player, it could be positive for United, who will need to bring in some money, also reduce the wage bill before signing a new player. That said, Newcastle United’s transfer of ownership could change the situation as the club will be seeking to sign better players in a bid to remain in the Premier League and challenge for a UEFA Champions League place in the not too distant future.
Something will need to give as these rumours will continue to do more harm than good. Solskjaer has stated that he has plans for the Dutchman but these pundits just don’t seem to let things rest, picking an international break to cause more doom and gloom, especially after United failed to beat Everton in the last match before the break, drawing 1-1 in a match that Everton seemed to show themselves as the better team.
Written by John Walker