Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera has hailed teammate Radamel Falcao as the best header of the ball in world football, despite the Colombia international’s struggles this season.
Falcao has been a huge disappointment since completing his season-long loan move from AS Monaco at the start of September - scoring a paltry four goals in 16 appearances - and is not expected to earn a permanent contract with the Red Devils this summer.
But Herrera sees light at the end of the tunnel for Falcao - and believes the former FC Porto and Atletico Madrid star is, slowly but surely, getting back to his best.
Herrera compares Falcao to Rooney
“Falcao is similar to Wayne [Rooney[ in his character,” Herrera revealed in an in-depth interview with the Telegraph. “He’s very, very humble. Last season, before the injury, he was maybe the best striker in the world.
“He had a very, very bad injury in his knee and he had a very difficult eight months. Now he’s getting better. He never misses one training session – the same as Wazza.”
Herrera: Falcao still the best in the air
Falcao was known prior to his Manchester United move as one of the world’s most clinical finishers, as well as one of the best headers of the ball.
And Herrera, who feels Falcao is the ultimate team player, still believes no striker compares to his teammate in terms of that invaluable ability to convert aerial chances.
“He’s trying to help the team always,” Herrera added. “He’s always in good positions in the box. Maybe he’s the best header of the ball in the world.
“We are going to enjoy him, I am sure. I’m very pleased to play with him. He made me lose the Europa League (when Atletico Madrid beat Athletic in the 2012 final)! Now he’s my teammate.”
Herrera's second strange prediction this week
It’s the second time in a week Herrera has been a little over-optimistic with a prediction about one of his teammates.
On Tuesday he confidently stated that Brazil Under-20 international Andreas Pereira will become a key player for Manchester United, despite the fact the 19-year-old is likely to leave the Red Devils on a free transfer at the end of the season.
It would be extraordinary - based on his dismal current form - if Manchester United agreed to sign Falcao, 29, on a permanent deal at the end of the season.
The formerly world-class striker has looked slow and frail this term, while his confidence seems to have hit rock-bottom following months of missed chances and substitutions.
Lewandowski or Kane for United?
Van Gaal has given Falcao every chance to succeed at Old Trafford, but the forward is now a shadow of his former self and will return to Monaco - barring a miracle - this summer.
Manchester United require a younger striker with more dynamism - and either Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski or Tottenham’s in-form forward Harry Kane would be perfect summer signings for the Red Devils.
Which striker should replace Radamel Falcao at Manchester United this summer? Have your say in the comments below!