Memphis Depay arrived at Manchester United in the summer with a weight of expectation following a £25 million move from PSV Eindhoven, but it’s fair to say the Dutchman has failed to live up to the hype.
The winger has made only 12 Premier League starts and was heckled by United supporters in his last outing, fans acknowledging Memphis’ wayward shooting in the win over Shrewsbury with chants of, “what the f*****g hell was that?”
Memphis dons the famous No.7 shirt, worn by Old Trafford legends including George Best, Eric Cantona, David Beckham and Cristiano Ronaldo, but he certainly isn’t on the path to joining the pantheon of United greats.
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But Memphis doesn’t need the fans to let him know that he isn’t producing the goods. The 22-year-old is fully aware that he is yet to justify the price tag and revealed that, through confidence and more games, he will fulfil his potential at the club.
When asked if he had lived up to expectations, Memphis replied: “No. Not yet. I know that,” reported the Independent.
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He added: “I will continue to fight for it. I have a lot of expectations on myself. That’s important. The club is busy and I am busy to improve it.
“I don’t want to put a date on it or say when, but it will come. Confidence will help and experience. You learn from your mistakes. Those moments, they will come and I will work and focus on it.”
Memphis’ words will be music to United’s ears. The winger has made headlines more for his flashy cars, Twitter remarks and disturbing jacket designs than his on-field performances this season.
In 20 league appearances, he has found the net just twice and is yet to complete a full 90 minutes since December.
By comparison, Jesse Lingard - Memphis’ replacement in the starting line-up - has scored four league goals in 13 games and has found the net three times in his last five appearances.
Season to forget
Memphis’ struggles have coincided with United’s season to forget, and the former PSV man certainly isn’t the only player who manager Louis van Gaal will have expected more from.
The 64-year-old’s position at the helm is perilous following failed attempts to win the Premier League and reach the knockout stages of the Champions League.
Fans have been calling for Van Gaal’s head since December, a month which effectively ended any hopes United had of league or Champions League glory.
The Red Devils exited the group stage following a 3-2 loss at Wolfsburg and followed up the defeat with successive losses to Bournemouth, Norwich and Stoke.
United’s refusal to sack Van Gaal after that disastrous four-game stretch was made all the more surprising when Jose Mourinho was dismissed from Chelsea midway through December.
Two months later, Van Gaal is still in the job and Mourinho remains available. Go figure.