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    Tuesday, 25 July 2017

    5 Manchester United flops who succeeded elsewhere

    Manchester United is one of the biggest clubs in the world and have produced a handful of talented footballers.
    While some players signed to the club did well for themselves and earned reputable names, there were still some who were seen as flops at Old Trafford but flourished in other places. 
    Not succeeding at Old Trafford though doesn’t necessarily make someone a bad player. Here are five examples of players who washed out of United, only to succeed massively at another club.
    01. Michael Keane

    Keane joined United as a youngster in 2009 and signed his first professional contract in 2011. By 2012, big things were being predicted for him as he made a handful of first-team appearances and was even named United’s Reserve Player of the Year. By the time 2014/15 rolled around, Keane was expected to be challenging for a spot in the first team for good.
    Unfortunately, Keane was chosen to start in United’s disastrous League Cup against MK Dons, a match that saw United hammered 4-0 by their League One opponents. Just weeks later, he was sent to Burnley on a loan until January 2015 - a move that became permanent when the loan deal ended. And far from being a flop, from there, he went from strength to strength, appearing in 44 of Burnley’s 46 league games, scoring five goals as the side won the Championship and were promoted into the Premier League. And 2016/17 saw them finish a respectable 16th in the EPL, with Keane being one of their most outstanding players, so much so that March 2017 saw his first England call-up, where he started and played well in a friendly match against Germany.
    02. Wilfried Zaha

    Sir Alex Ferguson signed him from Crystal Palace for a fee believed to have cost about £10m. Unfortunately, when Zaha arrived at United, Ferguson was gone and David Moyes was in his place. And right away, poor Zaha was never given a fair chance at his new club, as he fell out of favour
    with Moyes and played just twice before being packed off to Cardiff City on a loan in January 2014.
    Regardless of the reason, it seemed like a terrible waste; Zaha was sent back to Selhurst Park on loan for the 2014/15 season and then made the move permanent in February 2015. And he’s since basically settled back into his old role as one of Palace’s key men, as he won their Player of the Year award in the last two seasons. Currently, he is
    recognised as one of the best-attacking wide-men in the Premier League. 
    03. Angel di Maria

    Di Maria had been one of Los Blancos outstanding players in 2013/14 and had also had a good World Cup for Argentina. The former Benfica man started well at United, scoring his first goal and earning Man of the Match in a September game against QPR. And then, October saw him voted United’s Player of the Month, but from there it basically went downhill.
    The lanky winger returned in January but manager Louis Van Gaal couldn’t seem to decide whether he was a winger or a forward, and he was sent off in disgrace for grabbing the referee in an FA Cup Quarter-Final loss to Arsenal. He ended the season with just four goals in 32 appearances and was subsequently sold to Paris St. Germain in the summer of 2015.
    The move to Paris, however, seems to have resurrected his career – he was outstanding throughout 2015/16, setting a new assist record for Ligue 1 with 18, and his form continued into 2016/17, with 14 goals and 8 assists across all competitions.

    04. Danny Drinkwater

    Drinkwater’s United future seemed bright, but it simply wasn’t to be. A season-long loan to Huddersfield Town for 2009/10 was designed to give him more experience, but despite playing well in 33 appearances, another loan – this time to Cardiff – was organised
    for 2010/11. The Englishman only stayed at Cardiff until January 2011 before United recalled him, but unfortunately, it wasn’t to use him, rather pack him off to Watford on another loan move.
    Another loan to Barnsley followed before United gave up on the midfielder and sold him to Leicester City in January 2012. The move immediately paid off – Drinkwater became a key man for the Foxes during their promotion season in 2013/14, being shortlisted for Championship Player of the Season. And once in the Premier League, he proved he wasn’t out of his depth at all, as he starred in Leicester’s unlikely league triumph in 2015/16 – a season that saw them finish four places above United!
    05. Dion Dublin

    After United missed out on signing Alan Shearer in the summer of 1992, manager Alex Ferguson instead turned to Dublin, who he signed for £1m – at that time a pretty large fee – and he was expected to lead the line in the inaugural 1992/93 Premier League season for United. Unfortunately, fate intervened – Dublin broke his leg in just his second match for United, and by the time he returned from the injury, Ferguson had signed Eric Cantona. 
    With the form of Cantona and Mark Hughes keeping Dublin way out of the first team, he was restricted to just a handful of appearances for United and then moved to Coventry City for £2m in September 1994. The move saw Dublin give his stalled career a much-need momentum as he established himself as one of the Premier League’s most prolific goalscorers, even at a struggling club, including winning the Golden Boot in 1997/98 with 18 goals. 

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