Football Daily’s Patrick Van Straaten has delivered a damning verdict on imminent Manchester United incoming Antony.
The Ajax winger looks set to become a Manchester United player before the end of the summer transfer window. Reports have claimed United have reached an agreement for the winger, with the price understood to be €100m (£84m) including add-ons.
The price comes as a surprise considering Antony’s lack of output in the Eredivisie in the last few seasons. Throughout the last campaign, he managed to score eight league goals, whilst also assisting a further four to tally a goal involvement total of 12 – though he did rack up 22 across all competitions last term.
Speaking on the reported deal, Van Straaten said on Football Daily’s Sunday Vibes: “For €100m, I’m extremely negative. This is insane. Like, I don’t get it. He’s a promising player – that’s kind of it.
“Like, you want a guy in the Eredivisie who’s putting up insane numbers, basically, because of the competition in that league, and he got 12 goal involvements last season; he got 17 the year before.
“I was looking at his dribbles, and his success rate in the Eredivisie is like 57% – that’s ok. In the Champions League, it’s like 38-39%, which is the bottom 3% of wingers.
“So my concern is that when he gets up against ‘real’ defenders – because they don’t really have those in the Eredivisie – he is going to struggle with his take-ons. And if he loses the ability to beat people, then what have you got here?”
TIF Thoughts on Antony…
Whilst Antony is a talented young player, for £84m, we’d have to agree with Van Straaten when he says how ‘insane’ the potential deal is, particularly at that price. Of course, the Ajax man could burst into life at Old Trafford, but his numbers suggest that he may need time to settle into life in the Premier League. And for such a large fee, he may not be afforded that time.
Is this necessarily a player that Manchester United even need? They already have Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Anthony Elanga competing for a place on the wing, and whilst depth in talent is ideal, it could be argued that United need to strengthen in other areas this summer.
If the deal does go through, it will certainly be interesting to see how Antony adjusts to life in the Premier League.