One of the most interesting talking points in 2014/15, as in most other seasons, has been the impressive form of many players who have risen from the ashes of failure that dogged them the previous year. These footballers have shown great resolve and spirit to rejuvenate themselves and get back into the good books of their coaches and fans. As the current season draws to a close, here’s a look at the 10 most improved players this season (in no particular order).NOTE: Only players who suffered a dip in form last season before improving in the next have been considered . Under-21 players have not been included.
#1 Ashley Young - Manchester United
It was a sign of impending danger for Ashley Young when Angel Di Maria arrived at Old Trafford in a record transfer deal last summer. The previous season had been a difficult one for the ex-Aston Villa winger as he, just like most of his teammates, struggled to make any impact. When the transfer window closed, there were many who questioned why Young was still in the Manchester United squad. It’s not too much of an exaggeration to think that even Young may have wondered why he wasn’t packed off.
Fast forward eight months, and the Stretford End faithful will testify that things have turned 180 degrees. After Sunday’s derby win over the defending champions Manchester City, United had one man to thank in particular – Ashley Young – while Di Maria started on the bench, as he has done for many recent matches. Young’s goal and two assists served to further emphasise the enormous transformation he has undergone over the past few months – from an unnecessary pair of legs to an influential livewire.
Credit must go to Louis van Gaal for trusting the man from Stevenage and giving him a chance to show his worth. It is a chance that Young has grabbed with both hands, leading to murmurs of an England recall.