Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has spent a lengthy spell on the sidelines due to injury, but when he returns at the end of next month he faces an even lengthier spell on the substitutes' bench.
The 20-year-old was injured against Aston Villa on the opening day of the season and admits that he faces a difficult job to win his place back in the starting line-up due to the excellent form of his teammates.
He also accepts that will, in turn, affect his chances of making it into England's 2014 World Cup squad.
But there is a solution for this gifted young winger, who burst onto the scene at the Emirates Stadium during the 2011/12 campaign after leaving Southampton.
It's fair to say that Arsenal's midfield options are currently a lot stronger than Manchester United's, even though they are the reigning Premier League champions.
The Red Devils need a few quality additions, starting in January, in order to seriously challenge for silverware and keep up the pace with their rivals.
And there would be few better, realistic, signings than Oxlade-Chamberlain, who could become a star at Old Trafford.
Whether playing on one of the flanks or through the middle, as he has done at times for Arsenal, Oxlade-Chamberlain would be a huge success if he made the difficult decision to leave the Gunners.
Arsenal are already well-stocked in the right-wing position. The impressive Serge Gnabry has been occupying that role in the absence of Theo Walcott, who is going nowhere after signing a five-year deal last season, while one of their myriad of midfielders are also capable of playing in that position if required.
So, which player does Arsene Wenger leave out when Oxlade-Chamberlain returns? The answer is none of them.
With things going so well for Arsenal at the moment, Wenger will not want to risk upsetting the balance of the team just to accommodate Oxlade-Chamberlain, who is still developing after all.
But his development threatens to be hindered by not playing regular first-team football.
At this stage of his career it's vital that he gets games, while the idea of missing out on a World Cup won't sit well with him, either. Particularly as he scored a smashing goal against Brazil in a friendly at the Maracana earlier this year – proving that he has what it takes to perform against the very best.
United, of course, already have Antonio Valencia, Nani and the inexperienced Wilfried Zaha. But you would back Oxlade-Chamberlain to oust those three and make the right-wing spot at Old Trafford his own.
Arsenal are poised to end their trophy drought in the near future and Oxlade-Chamberlain will naturally want to be part of that – but it's never the same for a player who spends most of the campaign watching from the dugout.