Van de Beek’s underwhelming campaign has not come as a total shock to Mitten, but the well-respected journalist urged the creative talent to follow in the footsteps of Fred and improve on a substandard first 12 months on English shores if he wants to remain a United player.
He said: (17:17) “Now, I’ve said consistently on this podcast that when Van de Beek signed, I did what we do and spoke to people, and I was led to believe, I was pretty underwhelmed with the feedback I was getting in terms of people saying Donny van de Beek is a squad player.
“And I’m thinking what £40 million squad player, that’s odd. Now, he’s benefited from being a new player in that fans want to see more of him, but he’s not had a good season. In mitigation, he’s not played a lot of games, but when he has, Laurie [Whitwell] used the term game passing by, that wasn’t the first time that happened.
“Watford at home in the FA Cup the game passed him by. Watford are not Bayern Munich, you know, they’re not one of the top teams in the world. So, if he’s going to have a United future, he’s really got to up his game as Fred did after his poor first season.”
TIF Thoughts on Van de Beek…
Van de Beek, who is valued at £31.5 million (as per Transfermarkt), is undoubtedly a talented player; he scored 27 goals and provided 24 assists in his last two seasons at Ajax, helping the Eredivisie giants to a domestic double in 2018/19 as they also reached the Champions League semi-finals.
However, he has failed to replicate that sort of form and productivity at United, and he will surely have to improve in the following campaign if he wants to enjoy a long career Old Trafford.