In recent weeks there has been no shortage of interest for the Belgium under 21 international Adnan Januzaj.
This comes as no surprise as it’s been a breakthrough year for the 18-year-old, voted reserve team Player of Year and had a stellar run in the Dallas Cup this year in America.
And the youngster seems set to sign a new deal with Manchester United, according to his agent Dirk Devriese.
United are looking to secure the services of the young Belgian before competition increases when the players contract runs out in 2014.
Who is he?
Januzaj is on the verge for of stardom but is still relatively unknown outside Manchester. With that being said here’s a little introduction to United’s next wonder-kid.
Januzaj is a Kosovo-born Belgian winger, plucked from Anderlecht’s famous academy in 2011, which has produced player like Vincent Kompany, Romelu Lukaku and now Adnan Januzaj. He also shares the same birthday, February 5, as former Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo.
After an injury-hit first season with the Red Devils, he’s been an integral part of Warren Joyce’s side this season scoring one goal and five assists in just 14 appearances. After numerous stellar performances from the 18-year-old he was rewarded with a first-team shirt number and a sat on the bench in Sir Alex’s last game in charge against West Brom.
What Janzaj can bring to Manchester United
Well to start the 18-year-old is part of the crop of footballs modern wingers. This has seen wingers change from traditionally being hugged to the touchline, to now being able to float across the attacking line and play in multiple roles (central or wide).
We've seen this best from fellow countrymen Eden Hazard who enjoys cutting inside and linking with Juan Mata and Oscar. This is difficult to defend because it’s hard to tell which players are in which positions, because they are all able to assume at least two different roles.
It will also allow David Moyes to be more tactical versatile with a wider array of options.
It’s likely Adnan Januzaj will become a winger as this his natural position, Manchester United are in dire need of talent in this area and central areas are filled with supreme talent with the likes of Wayne Rooney and Shinji Kagawa.
In terms of abilities the 18-year-old possesses a number of qualities that make him a suitable wide man. He has wonderful ball control that enables him to keep possession very easily and manoeuvre around players. Combined with his wonderful skill-set and beautiful balance it enables Januzaj to get past opposing defenders with ease. He’s got great acceleration and turn of pace which also help him get past defenders.
“Adnan is a beautifully-balanced player.”
“He’s only 18 and has to grow into his frame but he he has good balance, good acceleration and is a very good technical player. He and Nick Powell, of the younger players, are at the top.”
However it doesn't stop there though, the Belgian has great vision and can split defence with his fantastic passing abilities enabling him to become an effective creative player during 90 minutes of play.
These traits show that technically the academy star has so much raw talent but he needs to work on the physical side. There are few more physical leagues on planet football than the Premier League and this will mean that Adnan needs to become stronger to cope with the brutal side of the English game. We saw this with Manchester United legend Cristiano Ronaldo who came to Old Trafford with a weedy framework and left with a muscular frame.
Technical abilities aren’t skills that can be taught easily, building on the physical side of the game is a matter of a lot of gym work. You only need to look at David De Gea to tell you that. With that being said the Belgian has got the potential to be a very fine player in the Premier League and the future of Manchester United football club.
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