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Will Ashley Young have a future at United next season?

Will Ashley Young have a future at United next season?

When signed at the start of the 2011-12 season, Young hit the ground running. He was a threat. He popped in some goals and assists and never ceased to be a threat down the left. It seemed like United managed to sign the player they needed to give them that pace down the left wing. This belief was reinforced during their famous win against Arsenal, when United beat them 8-2. Two goals and three assists against one of England’s giants. Suffering a long term injury mid-season, he had a relatively quieter second half.

His second & third seasons saw him side-lined with injury. He spent some time on the bench or was sometimes not included in the match day squad. The 2012-13 season saw him score 0 goals. His performances on the right wings, when deployed during European matches, were ineffective.

The arrival of Louis Van Gaal changed his fortunes. He felt happier with the management. His hamstring injury kept him out of the squad for the early part of the season. He even played as left back in certain matches, as United were plagued with injury crises. Despite a second injury at the start of 2015, he played the last 15 games of United’s season. He rediscovered a touch of the form he had when he first got transferred to the Red Devils. He credits it to Van Gaal restoring his confidence. He started to enjoy football again.

The Red Devil’s new formation now allows him to be more of a threat down the wings. LvG has not played him on the right, where Young was sometimes positioned in the previous two seasons. Maybe the tactics of Van Gaal keeping Fellaini, Herrera and Carrick in the center of midfield provides the muscle and vision to allow Young to make darting runs down the wing and try to cross the ball or take a shot himself, should the opportunity present itself.

One thing is for sure though, he will be looking to re-establish himself as a first choice squad member and put in strings of strong performances as United are back in the Champions League after almost a year.

– Gaurav Rao

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