Between the Lines

"Of all unimportant subjects, football is the most important" – Pope John Paul II

The Nani conundrum

Posted by hakanrylander on August 27, 2009

Two of a kind?

Two of a kind?

If you read my previous post you will know that I didn’t dare include Nani in the group of players of whom I expected a positive development this season. The reason is that Nani is by some distance the most frustrating player in our squad. There is no doubt that he has an awful lot of talent, but it’s equally obvious that more often than not he’s unable to use it properly. I’m often impressed by his all-important ability to create space for himself, but then he tends to waste the opportunity by mis-hitting a pass or a cross.

Defensively he’s a bit of a disaster. I don’t know whether this is because he lacks tactical awareness or just not fancies tracking back. The coaches need to work on this, as I’m sure they do. Particularly as he’s supposed to form a partnership with Patrice Evra, one of the most attack-minded full-backs in the world.

At the end of last season I had more or less written him off. I didn’t think he would be able to establish himself as an important part of the first-XI, even after the departure of Ronaldo. But then again in the last few weeks, particularly in the Community Shield, he’s shown the kind of form that raised my hopes of a bright future. Another false dawn? I have no idea. Frustrating, isn’t it?

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4 Responses to “The Nani conundrum”

  1. RedJack said

    I think he is constrained by the comparisons with Ronaldo – he felt the pressure when Ronaldo was with us as it was a direct comparison. Also the influence of Ronaldo off the field could be seen in his attitude on it. I think the boss should now be able to assert more authority and concentrate on bringing out his talent more now Ronaldo has gone. This season is decision making has been better and I think Valencia & Nani are our first choice wing pairing (unless Park is needed)

  2. […] to a new golden era (Between the Lines) The Nani conundrum (Between the Lines) Is Arjen Robben worth a punt? Here are some stats […]

  3. Venu said

    I have been an ardent supporter since his arrival but i am not sure if he will get beyond this season to cement his place in the side. It bodes well for the team that there is more competition but not so much for Nani!

  4. […] Between the Lines has been wrong all along about Nani. Regular visitors will be aware that I’ve dismissed him as our most frustrating player and […]

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