Is Angel di Maria overrated?

Angel di Maria enjoyed scintillating form for Real Madrid at the end of last season, climaxing in a man of the match performance against Atletico Madrid in the final match of the season when Los Blancos claimed their record 10th European Cup title. After that, Di Maria produced good performances for Argentina in the World Cup even though he missed the semifinal and final through injury. These performances led to many people claiming he was the best player in the world behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Still, Real Madrid opted for glamor signings James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos, instead of keeping Di Maria on as a starter. Understandably, the Argentine wanted to move to a club where he would receive more playing time. After rumors linking him to many clubs, Di Maria finally signed for English giants Manchester United for a British record transfer fee of 59.7 million pounds. Whenever a player commands such a large sum to move, the expectations are huge. Di Maria was immediately heralded by the Old Trafford faithful as the solution to all their problems. Di Maria has enjoyed a decent start to life in England, but is he as good as he was believed to be when he joined United? Let’s take a look.

Goals

Di Maria has never been known for his goal scoring. However, he certainly is capable of putting the ball in the back of the net. The diminutive Argentine has scored four goals for United in fourteen matches so far this season. He scored his first goal for the Red Devils in a match against Queen Park Rangers, his second appearance for the club when his indirect free kick bounced into the goal. He has since scored against Leicester City and Everton in the league and added one against Yeovil Town in the FA Cup.

Assists and Passing

Di Maria’s passing has always been the best part of his game. It’s what made him famous at Benfica, prompting Real Madrid to buy him, and it’s what he became known for at Real Madrid. So far this season Di Maria’s passing has been fairly good, but nothing more. He has assisted six goals in fourteen appearances. He has created 34 chances this season in the league, more than any of his teammates. However, he has completed only 80% of his passes, a paltry sum for a player of his quality.

Di Maria is clearly a very talented player. The excitement of Manchester United fans everywhere at the time of his arrival was completely warranted. In December, Di Maria won the award for the best Argentine player in 2014. Through all this praise and recognition, di Maria has played well, not well enough, though, to be the third best player in the world. Angel di Maria is a little bit overrated.

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2 thoughts on “Is Angel di Maria overrated?

  1. I guess I didn’t realize that people were ranking him as a top 3 player in the world. In my mind, ADM is a special player, and is maybe in the top 20. I think ManU over-payed in the transfer market, and fans might feel like he’s fell short of expectations. I think he needs more freedom to roam and find space, to find more space in front of the backline and pick his head up in the attacking third and combine. Also get in more 1v1 situations on the flanks. Then he will excel in Manchester, but right now no one at ManU is playing up to their hype.

    1. Nick, you are very right. If Di Maria is given more freedom and space, he will put in better performances. I also agree that no players at United are currently playing as well as they should be.

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