Hernandez future in doubt as Manchester United chase new striker
Manchester United transfer news: Robert Lewandowski chases puts Javier Hernandez future in doubt
It was quite a return for player who moved to Old Trafford for a fee of only £6 million and had completed only two full seasons as a professional in his native Mexico.
However, when once it seemed like Hernandez had the ability to rank alongside some of Manchester United's all-time great goalscorers, it would now seem as though his future with the club is in doubt.
Sir Alex Ferguson was careful not to overwork the 24-year-old last season after the exertions of the previous campaign sandwiched between consecutive summers of activity with Mexico.
But, as Hernandez was allowed to take a backseat, Danny Welbeck stole in to rise to prominence to provide the former with greater competition for a regular starting berth alongside Wayne Rooney.
The acquisition of Robin van Persie this year has seen Hernandez's role limited further, particularly given the Dutchman's immediate transference of his potent Arsenal form since moving to Old Trafford.
Hernandez can be forgiven for questioning his role under Ferguson given the deeper pool of attacking talent, and may become further dismayed by the club's supposed pursuit of Robert Lewandowski.
Reports claim United are keen to acquire the services of the Borussia Dortmund striker, who was named Bundesliga player of the season last term having scored 22 goals in the German league.
According to The Telegraph, this raises further questions over Hernandez's long-term future with United, despite only signing a five-year contract last October, with the forward facing the prospect of slipping further down the pecking order.
There will certainly be no shortage of interest should the arrival of Lewandowski prompt Hernandez's availability, with Chelsea one of the most prominent clubs to have been linked with a move for his signature.
The Blues have still yet to adequately reinforce up front following the departure of Didier Drogba during the summer, with Fernando Torres remaining Roberto di Matteo's only senior striker.
Hernandez would certainly provide Chelsea with a clinical option in the final third, and the Mexico international's movement on the shoulder of defenders would suit the club's new style.
Ferguson will surely be loath to sell Hernandez - particularly to a direct rival - but could find himself in a similar situation as to that of Dimitar Berbatov, who was gradually phased out despite ending 2010-12 as the club's top scorer.