Gary Neville believes Radamel Falcao waved goodbye to Manchester United supporters when he was substituted during Sunday's 1-1 draw with Arsenal after suggesting the way in which he acknowledged fans as he left the field of play showed the player has already accepted he has no future at Old Trafford.
In the absence of injured captain Wayne Rooney the Colombian striker was named as a surprise starter for yesterday's Premier League clash against the Gunners, but delivered another disappointing display in front of the home faithful at the Theatre of Dreams.
Falcao was withdrawn just after the hour mark and replaced by fit-again Robin van Persie, and he took the opportunity to say thank you to the followers that have continued to back him despite a completely underwhelming contribution during his time in England.
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Reflecting on the South American's unsuccessful stint with Louis van Gaal's side, Neville is not surprised that Falcao appears set to leave the Red Devils and return to his parent club AS Monaco.
The club do retain an option to make the 29-year-old's loan switch permanent at the end of the campaign, but given that he's offered so very little since arriving last August the likelihood of that happening remains very slim.
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“There was disappointment. Then there was a wave and then a second wave," Neville said on his weekly Sky Sports podcast. “It was a goodbye wave.
"Usually you give a salute wave when you are acknowledging the crowd. There was definitely a goodbye to this wave as the hand was moved side to side."
He added: “I don’t think it would be a surprise to anybody to see him leave. It hasn’t quite happened for this season for one reason or another.
“As a striker you rely on confidence. I don’t think he’s ever been full of confidence since he came to Manchester United."
Looking for a reason why things never worked out for the former FC Porto and Atletico Madrid marksman at Manchester United, the club's former captain pinpointed the veteran Dutch coach as a very difficult man to please.
However, the fact Falcao has failed to rediscover the kind of form that once made him one of the most prolific strikers in world football since recovering from the anterior cruciate knee ligament injury he suffered last year is probably more concerning for the player heading into the summer.
"I think you have to say Louis van Gaal is tough to play for. He expects a lot and whether that has worked or not for Falcao, I’m not sure.”
What the future holds for Falcao now is anyone's guess, but based on his demeanour at Old Trafford yesterday it's pretty safe to say that he won't be returning to Manchester United next term.
Manchester United fans: Why do you think things never worked out for Radamel Falcao at Old Trafford? Where do you think he'll end up playing next season? Share your thoughts in the comment box below...
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