Manchester United are expected to complete the £31 million signing of Netherlands winger Memphis Depay from PSV Eindhoven next week, and before even stepping foot inside Old Trafford, the 21-year-old has already stated his lofty aspirations.
According to the Manchester Evening News, the Netherlands youngster, who has recorded 15 international caps to date, is determined to emulate Cristiano Ronaldo's excellent spell at Old Trafford. Ronaldo won three Premier League titles, two League Cups, the FA Cup, the Champions League and the Club World Cup during six scintillating years in England.
United will sign Depay come the end of the current season, and the winger, whose 25 goals made him PSV’s highest scorer as the club won the Eredivisie, has certainly shown signs of fantastic potential. Less than a year after starring at the World Cup finals, he will be reunited with former Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal; the man who is most likely to help him achieve greatness.
With that in mind, we’ve decided to look how Depay's record this season compares to that of Cristiano Ronaldo during the 2006-2007 season, which is when he was the same age as the PSV winger.
|Team||Appearances||Goals Scored||Total Shots||Conversion Rate (%)||Assists||Key Passes|
|Memphis Depay||PSV Eindhoven||29||22||158||16.8||4||58|
|Cristiano Ronaldo||Manchester United||34||17||145||11.7||8||55|
If the statistics are anything to go by, then Depay has an absolutely fantastic chance of emulating the success of Ronaldo at Old Trafford.
The Portugal captain developed rapidly throughout his time in the Premier League, but lest we forget, he arrived as a dangerously raw talent. It took marvellous man-management on behalf of Sir Alex Ferguson to lead him down the path to stardom.
The Netherlands international arrives in England having finished the Eredivisie season as the competition's leading goal scorer, and this is reflected in the comparative statistics. Despite registering fewer assists than Ronaldo at the same age, he has recorded a superior number of key passes, having made five fewer appearances.
Ronaldo made the switch to Manchester courtesy of a minimal fee, while Depay will have to perform alongside the stigma of a £31 million price-tag. Nonetheless, his performances throughout the summer World Cup in Brazil provided enough of an indication to suggest he can handle tremendous pressure.
His arrival will be greeted by huge expectation, but he looks set to be a success. It is an exciting period for Manchester United fans as van Gaal continues his rebuilding programme. Regardless of who else the Dutchman decides to bring in this summer, Depay is almost certain to remain the pick of the bunch.