After six games, Manchester United sit fifth in the Premier League table and currently on a four-match winning streak having seen off arch-rivals Liverpool, league leaders Arsenal as well as Southampton and Leicester City.
However, due to the Queen’s death, United’s fixtures against Crystal Palace and Leeds United got postponed and the momentum has definitely fizzled out.
It will be a challenging October for Erik ten Hag‘s side as United are set to play 13 times in the space of 42 days in three different competitions.
The Dutchman seems to have a pretty good idea when it comes to his strongest XI, having picked it for the last 4 Premier League games as well as one Europa League game.
But the challenging aspect will be when the manager will be required to rotate his squad while still picking up wins. The last time he tried, United ended up losing to Real Sociedad 0-1 in their Europa League opener.
— MUFC Scoop (@MUFCScoop) September 17, 2022
There are quite a few stars waiting in the wings for the chance to stake their claim for a spot in the starting line-up. One of them is Donny van de Beek.
The former Ajax star was overlooked by former manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer while interim boss Ralf Rangnick was also not a big fan as he ended up sending him out on loan to Everton.
Ten Hag knows him well from his time at the Eredivisie champions and did play him in all pre-season games but the Dutch midfielder is yet to start a competitive game this season.
An untimely injury did not help matters but now he has been pictured back in training and with the busy upcoming fixture schedule, this might be the 25-year-old’s best chance at impressing the manager.
Can Donny save his Utd career?
Ten Hag is bound to rotate for the Europa League and EFL Cup ties and if the Netherlands international can put in a solid shift, he can finally resurrect his faltering United career.
There have already been reports of United looking to offload Van De Beek as early as this January with Inter Milan said to be interested and this might be one of his final chances to make an impression.
The good thing is his current boss knows how to use him. His versatility means he can play as the No 6, No 8 and even No 10 roles.
“He can do both [sit deep and play high] – I know that from the past. But his best position is his capabilities in the box of the opponent, so playing short behind the striker [is his best role].
“He has a really good smell for being in the right position,” his boss had said earlier in the season. And Van De Beek will be hoping to make an impact and save his United career.