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Is Angel Di Maria the perfect signing for Manchester United?

We?re in that little spell of no football action, with domestic and European competition having drawn to a close and the World Cup still two weeks away, but newspapers still have column inches to fill and the rumour mill is already in full swing, with a number of clubs angling to get their business done [...]The post Is Angel Di Maria the perfect signing for Manchester United? appeared first on Squawka News.

Di Maria
Angel Di Maria in action for Real Madrid

We’re in that little spell of no football action, with domestic and European competition having drawn to a close and the World Cup still two weeks away, but newspapers still have column inches to fill and the rumour mill is already in full swing, with a number of clubs angling to get their business done before the showpiece tournament gets under way.

Manchester United are expected to be one of the busiest clubs in the transfer window as they look to rebuild their squad and a host of players have already been linked with a switch to be part of Louis Van Gaal’s Old Trafford revolution.

Angel Di Maria is the latest to have dbeen rumoured to be a target of Manchester United, with a bid reportedly being prepared for one of the most underrated players in world football currently. Arsenal have also been heavily linked with the Argentina international who has struggled to strike a real affinity with the Bernabeu faithful.

We at Squawka have put together a guide to see if Di Maria would indeed be a wise purchase for United and whether he would fit into the system at Old Trafford.

Where does he play?

Di Maria is very much an attacking midfielder with the propensity to play out wide, with his devastating ability to run at players causing havoc both domestically and in Europe as one of the most dangerous players in the world currently.

While often having to play second fiddle to the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale, with their heftier transfer fees demanding they start for Real Madrid, Di Maria has clung on to his place in the team with an array of scintillating displays, dispelling the idea that he was surplus to requirements at Santiago Bernabeu last summer.

Having still not got the recognition he deserves after leading Europe’s assist charts outright with 17 in the league and a further five in the Champions League, Di Maria could look to move on and be the main man elsewhere, but Real won’t let him leave easily, as he has arguably been just as important to them as any of their other more heralded stars.

Strengths and Weaknesses

Di Maria’s great strength come from his direct running at players, as with the ball at his feet and a stretch of green to run into, there are few people who can match the level of destruction that the Argentinean flyer can.

48 successful take-ons doesn’t quite do his ability to run with the ball justice, but it is his pinpoint delivery on the run that really separates him from the pack, with Di Maria having created 90 chances in the league alone to claim a whopping 17 assists, a total not matched by anybody anywhere in Europe’s top five leagues.

A further 19 were created in his 11 Champions League games as well to claim another five assists, leaving him far and away as Europe’s assist king and you feel as though he would be talked about in the same breath as Ronaldo, Bale, Messi and Hazard if he could just add a few more goals to his game.

For Di Maria has mustered just four goals in his 34 league games this season, despite having had 58 shots on goal, with the Real Madrid man having converted a relatively paltry 6.9% of his shots on goal.

How will he fit into Manchester United’s system?

Ask anyone affiliated with Manchester United what their biggest problems were in the season just finished and they will talk about the lack of quality in the wide areas, with the likes of Ashley Young, Nani and Antonio Valencia failing to impress, while Adnan Januzaj is still learning his trade despite a reasonably successful start to his professional career.

In Di Maria, United could find the perfect solution to play on either side of the pitch, fitting perfectly into a system that includes three attacking midfielders behind a striker, with his current role with Real seeing him often interchange with the likes of Bale, Isco and Ronaldo to devastating effect.

One feels that given a similar role at United, Di Maria could be the most dangerous player in the Premier League, and would provide the danger from the flanks that was sorely lacking in a side that seemed to rely heavily on crosses into the box, while he could comfortably switch flanks or even drift into the middle  to form a formidable trio with Juan Mata and one other to confound a destroy opponents.

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Published with permission from Squawka News.

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