Adnan Januzaj is the future and must stay at Manchester United


Last season had plenty more downs than ups. David Moyes’ appointment saw the club fall from reigning champions to seventh place with no Champions League football. The team’s performances were lackluster and the most standout performer of the year was goalkeeper David De Gea, which further exclaims how poor the side were last term.

After Moyes’ sacking in April the club made strides however. They ended the season with Ryan Giggs in charge, 3 wins from their final four games and some more youth players making the step up to the first team. James Wilson and Tom Lawrence made debuts under Ryan Giggs, with Wilson scoring twice against Hull at Old Trafford.

Despite being so highly rated at Manchester United, James Wilson isn’t the brightest star to shine from the Manchester United academy. The Belgium international was given his breakthrough in Manchester United’s first team squad by Moyes and was the shining light for United’s season. Adnan Januzaj played on the left wing for the majority of the season, scoring 4 goals including both in a 2-1 comeback victory over Sunderland.

Since Louis Van Gaal’s arrival at Manchester United, there has been lots of speculation surrounding Januzaj’s future. Some have claimed he won’t get enough playing time to develop properly into the world class player he is destined to be. Some ex-pro’s have claimed Januzaj should leave the club in search for first team minutes.

However, the best place for him is without question Manchester United. No?

Januzaj scored a hat-trick against Sunderland U21’s on Monday night at Old Trafford. [Credit: @premierleague]Why do people dispute this? He’s the brightest young talent at the club by some distance, but that doesn’t mean he should be guaranteed starts all season long. During his time at the club he’s played on both wings, as a number 10 and even as a striker. He’s versatile and has the exact attributes the club are missing. He’s got pace, agility, ability on the ball but most importantly that ‘X-Factor’ that the team has been missing for years.

Angel Di Maria’s signing has added all of that to the starting line-up in a more complete package, but there’s no reason that Adnan should see that as a negative. Januzaj will be at a club with a huge reputation for developing youth. Barring Barcelona in recent years, no club has promoted so many prospects to first team football. He’ll be learning from world class players every day. Players like Di Maria, Mata, Rooney, van Persie and Falcao will all be helping him refine his game and become the next big thing in world football.

Adding to that, Louis Van Gaal has made his name promoting players from the youth teams and implementing them into the first team squad. Players such as Alaba, Muller, Schweinsteiger and Badstuber were brought into the Bayern Munich team while players like Xavi, Iniesta and Puyol. Even at Ajax he was in charge when the Amsterdam club promoted Davids, Seeford, Kluivert and Overmars.

Tyler Blackett has started all four Premier League games so far this season, although that’s mainly through injury. James Wilson’s emergence into the first team was a catalyst for the departures of Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez while Andreas Pereira and Jesse Lingard have also been included in the first team fold this season.

Januzaj needs to be patient. Last year he broke into Belgium’s World Cup squad and the Manchester United first team. This year with less games and more competition for places Januzaj will struggle to get a regular run of starts without a few injuries helping him out. However, he has admitted he’s ready to make an impact.

Following a hat-trick on Monday night in the 4-0 win over Sunderland for the U21’s, Januzaj spoke of his pride at his defensive display.

"“Obviously, even if it’s Reserves level, I always have to show myself and improve. I got a hat-trick but I think I worked hard defensively as well and these are the kind of things I have to do now and at first-team level.”"

At 19 years old, Januzaj has his whole future ahead of him. Moving to Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich or any other top European club wouldn’t see anything change. He’s unlikely to get many minutes there either and with United vying to get back into the Champions League for next season, it’s just a one off year for his progression.

Gary Neville has said previously that he believes Januzaj could become “one of the best in the world” while we’ve all seen a graze of his ability for ourselves. This is just the tip of the iceberg with Adnan, the future of Manchester United Football Club.