He’s been a vital player at Old Trafford this campaign as he’s one of five players to have started 30 or more games this season, already more than twice as many minutes this season as he did in 2015-16.
The Ecuadorian has been arguably one of our best performers this campaign as has remained effective in getting the ball forward on the flanks and crossing the ball into the box for Man United’s forwards.
Speaking about his improvements, Valencia claims it’s because Mourinho has put all of his trust in him.
“I feel that el mister [the manager] really believes in me,” he said.
“I’ve played in many games and I have been free of serious injuries. I spoke with mister soon after he arrived. He told me that when he was at Real Madrid he wanted to sign me but United had said no. That conversation gave me a lot of confidence and I have been happy to play right-back rather than further forward, where I’ve played for most of my career. I feel very comfortable, but in a team like United you have to attack anyway from right-back. When you play in this position you have an opportunity to find space and make the best of that space.”
When Mourinho first arrived at the club there were concerns over who would perform in the right-back role as Matteo Darmian wasn’t performing to the best of his abilities, but Valencia has proven he has it in the locker.
The Portuguese boss labelled him as the best in his position around the world and it’s no surprise to see how integral he’s been in the new system.