Manchester United legend sets ambitious target for Di Maria

Angel Di Maria Argentina

Manchester United legend Paul Scholes wants club-record signing Angel di Maria to net "20-25 goals" this season.

Di Maria arrived at Old Trafford earlier this week for a British-record fee of around £59.7 million, and much will be expected of the big-money buy.

The fee for the Argentina winger eclipses the £37 million outlay to land Juan Mata in January, and United's struggles over the past 12 months have seen them take an aggressive stance in the transfer market.

They have spent around £135 million so far this summer on Di Maria, Luke Shaw, Ander Herrera and Marcos Rojo and they are expected to splash even more before the transfer deadline on September 1.

Di Maria arrives with a reputation as one of the most creative and exciting talents in world football, and he enjoyed a superb World Cup with Argentina on the back of Champions League and Copa del Rey wins with Los Blancos last term.

Scholes, who played for United for 20 years, thinks that Di Maria will have to hit the ground running, and he feels that the versatile wideman must guarantee goals for a side that has designs on getting straight back into the Champions League next term.

Writing in his column in The Independent, he said: "For the amount of money being paid for Di Maria I would ideally want an attacking player who can score 20 to 25 goals a season. His record says he will not get that many, but that he will create a lot."

The 39-year-old thinks that Di Maria's versatility will give Louis van Gaal a whole number of options in the final third.

"I don’t think Di Maria is going to play as a wing-back in a 3-5-2 system," he added. "I could see him playing wide in a 4-4-2 or a 4-4-1-1 formation. But if Van Gaal is sticking with 3-5-2 I could see Di Maria playing off Robin van Persie and Rooney as a third striker."

"I could also see him as a No 10 in the Juan Mata role. He could also play in the same side as Mata. Mata is a great player but he doesn’t have any pace, and needs to be played with others who do."

Di Maria could be in line for his United debut when they travel to Burnley this weekend.

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