When Manchester United paid a bundle to PSV for Memphis Depay, it was expected that the youngster would take on the creative boots that the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo had used to boost the Manchester club to bigger and better things.
United shelled out close to 25 million pounds for the Dutch attacker, who was the top scorer in the Eredivisie in the 2014-15 season and was even awarded the Johan Cruyff Trophy in the Netherlands for his incredible performances which won PSV the league title.
That was the expectation for the highly rated player but reality has hit them this season and the winger has barely started for the Premier League side. The last time he did start for the side was the 2-0 loss against Liverpool in the Europa League and even in that game, he did put up a poor showing.
Times are tough for United as it is, there are no guarantees that they would be playing in the Champions League and even the fact that Louis van Gaal would be present at the club next season. Depay could well be a casualty of the changes that take place at United.
Depay did start his season extremely well; he did star for the side against Club Brugge in the Champions League but then the problems began for the 22-year-old. Depay’s form dipped after a couple of months and questions were asked about his ability to deal with the high pressure of playing for a club as big as Manchester United.
He spoke to the Dutch Newspaper De Telegraaf and stated:
“There are a lot of games in Manchester. There are very few rest days and on training days, you are mainly concerned with recovering. It’s heavy, two games a week, always at a high level, and my body has to get used to that.”
This did not end up too well with the management of the club, who did speak about his party lifestyle and how he could end up becoming the next Angel Di Maria, a fear that seems to be coming true at the moment.
Depay has scored just two goals in the Premier League this season and has the worst shots-to-goals conversion rate for the club. In fact, he comes in a list of players who have the lowest conversion stats this season.
The Dutch winger has a conversion rate of 5.88% which is part of a list which is topped by Jonjo Shelvey. Even if we are to see some of the names on the list, the issue is that Depay is a better player than what the stats show but as seen with the case of Angel Di Maria, this might be a place which just is not suiting him.
The sheer pressure of playing for Manchester United might be getting to him and with expectations hitting the roof, not living up to them will have their own consequences. United have the money to make changes in their playing XI such is their strength in the transfer market.
We saw that with Angel Di Maria and with the likes of Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial picking up the slack, Depay could well be on his way out with some other young gun coming in for United.