Manchester United’s attacking options (or lack thereof) have come under intense scrutiny this season following the Red Devils’ underwhelming showings this season, and the performances of United old boy Chicharito have only served to expose Louis van Gaal’s failings further.
It was telling that on the day United were defeated against Premier League minnows Bournemouth, Javier Hernandez bagged his first-ever career hat-trick for Bayer Leverkusen against Borussia Monchengladbach.
The Mexico international was sold to Leverkusen during the summer after being deemed surplus to requirements by van Gaal.
The Dutch coach has never fancied him, and sent him on loan to Real Madrid last season, before ending his time at Old Trafford for good this summer.
He’s one of a number of attacking players—along with the likes of Danny Welbeck, Radamel Falcao, Nani, Robin van Persie and Angel Di Maria—to have been cut loose by LVG, but the Dutch coach’s replacements simply aren’t replacing the departed internationals with any great conviction.
Anthony Martial—bought from AS Monaco at such great expense—has gone off the boil, while Memphis Depay was again sub-par against the Cherries.
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An injury suffered by Jesse Lingard in that match threatens to further undermine the Red Devils’ options, and it’s telling that Chicharito has managed more this season (15) than the whole of the United squad put together in the last two months (13).
With their title challenge stumbling, and with a humiliating Champions League elimination in the bag, is there any doubt that van Gaal has got things horribly wrong at Old Trafford?