Cleverley has more goals, assists than £16m Manchester United star - Writing on the wall?

Kagawa United

We run through four surprising Manchester United players who have had more successful Premier League performances than Shinji Kagawa.

Shinji Kagawa continues to be linked with a return to Germany, to reunite with former boss Jurgen Klopp in the summer.

While doubtful David Moyes would sell than Japanese star this month, if production does not pick up he may have to consider his options.

While the start of the season was overshadowed by the clamour of the #FreeShinji viral campaign from fans upset he was not being given an opportunity, when he has been granted game time - he has failed to do anything with it.

In 11 starts in all competitions, Kagawa has no goals or assists to his name.

In those matches he has provided just 10 key passes and 12 shots on goal, none of which have led to the Red Devils finding the back of the net.

To put his performances into context, there are four surprising players who have been more productive than him.

Tom Cleverley

Under-fire midfielder Tom Cleverley has just one goal to his name this season, and no assists, coming in a win away to Aston Villa. 

Ashley Young

Ashley Young came into this season as a disappointment, and Shinji Kagawa the bright hope. The 28-year-old does have two goals to his name, scored in the last month, and is at least showing signs of an upturn in fortunes.

Chris Smalling 

It's got so bad for Kagawa that even Chris Smalling has more goals than he does, scoring in the 3-2 Boxing Day win over Hull City.

Patrice Evra

Patrice Evra has always been fairly productive, and has one goal and two assists to his name. Still you would expect playmaker Kagawa to have made more of a contribution than a left-back.

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While these paltry figures of his teammates may seem trivial, they highlight just how ineffective Kagawa has been in the 1,093 minutes of first team action this season he has seen.

David Moyes, his tactics, and his coaching staff must take responsibility for the failure to get the best out of the attacker, looking from day one like they do not know where to fit him in.

The blame ultimately lies at the players' feet however - as in his chances he has not managed to back up the huge clamour for his inclusion which came early in the season.

The second half of the season will be crucial for the player to step up and deliver on the hype - If he cannot then Moyes may just decide he is bad fit for United and cash in over the summer.

image: © Marcel Sigg

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