Reported target Memphis Depay an impressive upgrade for Van Gaal’s Manchester United

Old Trafford

Recent reports suggest Manchester United will intensify their interest in PSV Eindhoven winger Memphis Depay.

According to The Telegraph, Manchester United are looking to intensify their interest in PSV Eindhoven winger Memphis Depay,

The report suggests manager Louis van Gaal is looking to add at least four new players to his squad come the summer window, and with the Dutch outfit seemingly resigned to losing the 21-year-old attacker ahead of next season, he is a priority target.

Depay, who is also being watched by Paris St-Germain, has been the star of the show in Eindhoven’s impressive domestic season. With the club boasting a significant lead at the summit of the Eredivisie table, should he leave at the end of the season, he will do so on a tremendous high.

On the back of the latest story, how does the Dutchman compare to Louis van Gaal’s current crop of midfield talent?

Depay’s obvious strength is his ability to score goals. He has netted an incredible 17 goals in just 24 league appearances this term – a rate of 0.74 goals per game. This impressive record sees him rank as the Eredivisie top scorer, having contributed to 24% of PSV’s total goals.

Season Stats per Appearance TeamGoalsAssistsShotsShot Accuracy (%)Key PassesPass Accuracy (%)DribblesDribble Success (%)Appearances
Memphis Depay PSV 0.71 0.12 5.33 43 1.83 75 2.71 55.56 24

In this regard, he is far superior to the current Old Trafford selection. This may come as little surprise considering the danger he poses on a weekly basis. Indeed, he fashions a league-best 5.33 shots per appearance, with United’s most adventurous player managing 2.67.

The Netherlands international is only bettered by Di Maria when it comes to chances created per match, and he is far more prolific than the current Red Devils midfielders in terms of his ability to dribble past an opponent - having completed 2.71 take-ons per appearance.

 Season Stats per Appearance TeamGoalsAssistsShotsShot Accuracy (%)Key PassesPass Accuracy (%)DribblesDribble Success (%)Appearances
Ángel Di María Man Utd 0.14 0.43 2.67 29 2.19 78 2.05 39.09 21
Ashley Young Man Utd 0.06 0.06 0.83 40 1.11 81 1.5 48.21 18
Antonio Valencia Man Utd 0 0.08 0.21 40 0.71 89 1.08 50.98 24
Adnan Januzaj Man Utd 0 0 1.5 21 0.88 82 1.13 31.58 16

For a player with tremendous ability in the final third, Depay has very few negatives surrounding his game. However, the solitary concern for Louis van Gaal will be his compatriot’s eye for a pass – he has completed just 75% of his attempts to find a teammate this term; 8% lower than United’s midfield average.

In terms of the attacking threat he offers, Depay would be an outstanding signing for Louis van Gaal and Manchester United. There’s a reason the Dutchman is so highly coveted across Europe and one feels his addition would prove a sizeable step in the club’s path to reclaiming the Premier League title.

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch