Ole Gunnar Solskjær has repeatedly reassured supporters that they need not worry about the lack of regular game time for Donny van de Beek.
When the Dutchman was acquired in the summer, there were several confused murmurs about just what role he would play going forward given the sheer potential he commands. As of recent, de Beek has been spending a lot of time on the bench leading to unrest about his talent being wasted.
There are many solid arguments to be made as to just why the Norwegian gaffer must take the initiative to deploy him more often.
The most basic one stems from just how good a job he does when he is on the pitch. Despite spending paltry minutes in the Premier League, Manchester United’s numbers when he is around are exceptional. In fact, half of United’s goals have come with him on the pitch. The goals coming in clearly point to a strong catalysing influence.
Further still, the 23-year-old adds a lot of creative workrate to the side’s efforts, something that cannot be said of all of the club’s midfielders. He covers the pitch in excellent fashion and with a good track record. In fact, the very reality that he is likely to put in more of an effort makes him a more eligible starting option than Paul Pogba.
The Frenchman was painfully lethargic during the club’s recent rout against Arsenal in the Premier League and it can be argued that it was he who cost United the game. As such, Solskjær must begin to put his foot down and field de Beek ahead of Pogba until the former Juventus man is able to find his impactful form again, if at all.
A similar argument can also be made for Bruno Fernandes. However, for the Portuguese midfielder, it is the fatigue factor that is more of a question. Having a player of his calibre come off the bench can make all the difference as illustrated during the RB Leipzig game.
Essentially, having a player as versatile as the former Ajax man should incentivize the gaffer to give him a chance more often rather than go with the now predictable and conventional options that he relies on.
This versatility factor also plays on altering the shape of the team and comes in handy when the forward line has to be altered. Until the likes of Anthony Martial and Edinson Cavani find their regular goal-scoring prowess, having a player like de Beek create and score goals is crucial. His debut goal against Crystal Palace and the crossbar chance against Arsenal in addition to his past record show this quite well.
All in all, the change must be put in sooner rather than later and the relatively safe run of games ahead may be as good a chance to do so as any.