Diego Forlan has defended Shinji Kagawa’s season at Manchester United and blamed the fact that he hasn’t been able to play in his natural position behind his poor season.
The 24-year-old has indeed hardly had any game time in his natural No. 10 role thanks to the prominence of Wayne Rooney and has only completed 90 minutes on three occasions in 2014.
His best performance of the year came against West Ham where he was able to float centrally in a dynamic formation and speaking to the Japan Times, Forlan believes the lack of minutes as a central player have hindered his influence.
“Shinji Kagawa is a quality player,” he said. “There’s no mistake about that.
“And he’s shown that in the few games he has played in. But he’s a natural central midfielder who’s being played out wide, and is in a situation where he is not given a chance to play up to his potential.”
Forlan is well placed to give some advice to Kagawa given his shaky start at Old Trafford but while he is right that not being used in the middle has hindered Kagawa, it doesn’t justify the fact he has no goals or assists to his name this season in 18 appearances.
Kagawa’s season has had plenty of promise but also plenty of invisible moments and although Moyes can be blamed for playing him out of position too much, Kagawa needs to take some blame too for not making the most of his opportunities when given to him.