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Manchester United: The curse of the no.7 shirt

Modified 20 Dec 2019, 19:08 IST

Owen, Di Maria, and Valencia tried, unsuccessfully, to live up to the legacy of the United No7.

The shirt with the Number 7 that has been blessed by players like George Best, Bryan Robson, Eric Cantona, David Beckham and more recently, Cristiano Ronaldo seems to have been contaminated with a distinctive curse.

On Saturday, Alexis Sanchez, the current United No7, scored his first goal of the season and his fourth in his career as a United player. That goal against Newcastle was only the 14th to have been scored by a Red Devils No7 in the Premier League, following Ronaldo's transfer to Real Madrid back in 2009. Before the Chilean, 4 players tried, unsuccessfully, to lift the heavy weight of the Number 7.

Michael Owen (2009-2012)

Owen scored only 5 times in the Premier League for Manchester United

Owen was the first to try to live up to the legacy of the Number 7 at Manchester United. He arrived at the Theater of Dreams from Newcastle United but clearly failed to make an impact. He made 31 appearances scoring only 5 goals in the Premier League.

Up to his exit as a free agent in 2012, Owen had scored a total of 17 goals for Manchester United in all competitions.

Antonio Valencia (2012-2014)

Valencia never managed to make a difference for United in the attacking domain

On July 2009, United paid £17 million to acquire the services of Antonio Valencia from Wigan Athletic. In his early days at Manchester, Valencia was used as a right winger but his record of having scored only 1 goal in 30 league appearances got him moved back to the defence where he remains as of today.

Angel Di Maria (2014-2015)

Manchester United v Burnley - Premier League
Manchester United v Burnley - Premier League

Di Maria made good of his exceptional performance for Real Madrid in the 2014 Champions League final with a transfer to Manchester United. The Red Devils paid £67.5 million to secure his services. Everybody thought that, at last, United had found their next superstar.


However, Di Maria scored only 3 times in 27 league appearances and one year later, he was on his way to Paris Saint-Germain.

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Published 08 Oct 2018, 15:07 IST
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