Following Holland’s impressive World Cup campaign, incoming Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal reportedly told Arjen Robben that there would be a place for him at Old Trafford next season.
Which all in all, is hardly surprising – the Oranje international is one of the best wingers in world football, and just netted three times in seven World Cup appearances. There would be a place for the 30 year-old at almost any club in Europe, let alone a team that finished seventh in the Premier League last season.
Equally as unsurprisingly, despite having a positive relationship with LVG, the Bayern Munich star has rejected the opportunity to join the now-departed Netherlands boss at Carrington. Apparently he likes all that continuous winning that goes on at the Allianz Arena.
Thus, with United in desperate need of some added quality out wide, they’ll have to switch their attentions to a more available but equally talented winger. With that in mind, here’s a list of FIVE Arjen Robben alternatives for the Red Devils to consider.
Manchester United may have to look no further than the Netherlands national team to find an alternative to Arjen Robben in the form of Memphis Depay – one of the Eredivisie’s brightest sparks and a firm favourite of Louis van Gaal.
The 20 year-old claimed twelve goals and seven assists in 32 league appearances for PSV last season. Take a gander at his campaign highlights below:
Impressively, the Dutch hotshot transitioned his form into the World Cup. As Oranje’s resident impact sub, he claimed two goals and one assist in four World Cup appearances, including this swerving strike against Australia:
…as well as this far-post finish against Chile:
Dubbed the ‘Cristiano Ronaldo of Holland’ for their shared style and free-kick technique, rumours linking Depay with an Old Trafford switch have been circulating for some time:
Manchester United to launch transfer bid for ‘Dutch Cristiano Ronaldo’ Memphis Depay after goal sinks Australia? http://t.co/YNhFcUPYi0
— Metro Sport (@Metro_Sport) June 18, 2014
But Eindhoven boss Phillip Cocu insists his club are yet to receive an offer for the highly-rated wideman.
Another Arjen Robben alternative already linked with an Old Trafford move is Real Madrid’s Angel Di Maria.
— It’s MUFC (@itsmufc) July 7, 2014
The Argentina international’s World Cup was unfortunately cut short through injury, but he netted this vital last-minute winner against Switzerland in the round of 16:
And finished Brazil 2014 with the third-best dribbling return of any player at the tournament, as detailed below:
The 25 year-old claimed the Man of the Match award in last term’s Champions League final, whilst domestically a transition to a more central role saw him become La Liga’s top creator:
Surprisingly, Los Blancos appear more than prepared to sell, but recent speculation suggests the Red Devils will be gazumped by PSG for his signature:
— MailOnline Sport (@MailSport) July 13, 2014
Having thoroughly excelled at Fiorentina last season and carried his form into Colombia’s World Cup campaign, road-running winger Juan Cuadrado has quickly emerged as one of the most sought-after attackers in Europe.
The 26 year-old absolutely destroyed Serie A last season and had a significant impact at Brazil 2014, as detailed below:
In fact, nobody at the tournament bettered his four assists:
Including this set-up to James Rodriguez:
Combining pace, athleticism, trickery and netting prowess, this goal typifies what the South American is all about:
He’d certainly be a throwback to more progressive wide-man times at Old Trafford, but there’s a host of competition for Cuadrado’s signature this summer:
Barcelona, Arsenal & Man United will battle it out to sign Fiorentina winger Juan Cuadrado, valued at €35m.
— Transfer Sources (@TransferSources) July 7, 2014
Having claimed 20 goals in 49 appearances for Real Sociedad last season and further showcased his abilities at Brazil 2014, Antoine Griezmann appears destined for a move to a major club this summer, especially after allegedly rejecting a new contract with the La Liga outfit.
Indeed, the 23 year-old’s role in the Anoeta side’s rise has been remarkable, propelling them from the Spanish second tier to the Champions League in the space of four seasons. The prior campaign was undoubtedly the France international’s best however -here’s his highlights from the 2013/14 season…
This effort in a World Cup warm-up friendly wasn’t too bad either…
Griezmann has been earmarked as a future star for some time, and thus Premier League interest in the winger, who reportedly comes with a €25million release clause, is high.
But recent speculation suggests Liverpool have come closest to securing his signature:
— Metro Sport (@Metro_Sport) July 9, 2014
Congratulation to the whole Team! Your Dream has Come true! And Thanks to my bro for your gesture:) Believe ✌️ pic.twitter.com/Cgb6xeDq8T
— Marco Reus (@woodyinho) July 14, 2014
Bundesliga star Marco Reus insisted earlier this summer that he would reject Premier League interest to stay at Borussia Dortmund, but widely considered to be one of Europe’s leading widemen, it would be surprising if Louis van Gaal didn’t at least try to tempt him to Old Trafford.
The 25 year-old has been in sensational form since joining the Westfalen ranks two years ago, amassing 42 goals in 90 appearances and helping the Black Yellows reach the 2013 Champions League final.
That includes a Bundesliga Player of the Year award-winning 2013/14 campaign, as detailed below:
An incredibly talented, fast and versatile attacker, capable of operating on either flank, centrally or as an out-and-out striker, the German international has a lot to offer the Red Devils in the final third. Here’s a quick look at his Top Five Bundesliga goals:
Rather surprisingly, Liverpool have emerged as Reus’ likeliest suitors over the last few days, after allegedly being rejected by Barcelona.
— Transfer Clue (@TransferClue) July 15, 2014