Manchester United: Kagawa must replace Young

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The inquest into Manchester United’s 4-1 loss to bitter rivals Manchester City has well and truly begun. David Moyes did not get the result he wanted in his first Manchester derby leaving fans going into thought mode over how the United team can prevent the same humiliation again this season.

Although it was the defence that suffered the most criticism after the match at the Etihad it can’t be overlooked that United rarely threatened the City’s back-line and it would seem that Moyes will need to drastically adjust his midfield selections.

Having started with a midfield of Carrick, Young, Valencia and Fellaini against City with Rooney playing behind the striker Welbeck. Moyes switched it up in the midweek 1-0 win over Liverpool - placing Jones, Giggs, Nani and Kagawa in his midfield with Rooney once again behind the striker - this time being the match winner Hernandez.

Shinji Kagawa is a player who is yet to be used by the new United manager on a regular basis.

The Japanese international who was brought to Old Trafford by Sir Alex Ferguson has proved in the past he has the ability to not only create chances for himself on a regularly but create assists for his teammates too.

A hat-trick against Norwich last season was his star performance but also had the United fans excited to see more from him in every game he played in.

The tricky midfield playmaker should be given the opportunity to link with Rooney and Robin Van Persie to truly show Moyes how he can aid the team in their attacking movements. Kagawa will not be a replacement for Rooney but a benefit to him. Neat one-two-passes that open up the game will become a regular occurrence - this was shown with Kagawa’s play with Hernandez on Wednesday.

The argument is much about what Ashley Young can’t do as well as what Kagawa can. The England international’s form has been poor. The 30-yard bending strikes that the winger used to produce on a regular basis have been kept in his locker of late. Simple link up play is falling apart - not to mention several of his ambitious attempts to win penalties by falling into player’s legs.

His last goal for United came back in April 2012. A lot players go through a period that produces a lack of goals so i wouldn’t use this stat as the sole reason to drop Young. I believe Kagawa’s ability to change the game for team the with one simple pass is more the definitive reason.

Having Fellaini now part of the United set-up may cause a problem for Kagawa in terms of playing in a central attacking midfield role. If Moyes can find the right balance between the two players alongside Rooney and RVP, defences will be wondering how on earth they will be able to cope.

United face West Brom at home this Saturday and Moyes should use this match as the perfect opportunity to allow Kagawa the freedom to show his capabilities in the Premier League whilst let Young have to sit on the sidelines and think about how he can improve his game.

Ashley Young
Manchester United
Shinji Kagawa
Premier League
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