Photo credit should read Ian MacNicol,Ian MacNicol/AFP via Getty Images

When discussing Adnan Januzaj, it is impossible not to cast your mind back to the odd moment of match-winning genius; that two-goal breakthrough performance against Sunderland in 2013, that sublime, Robben-esque winner against England at the 2018 World Cup.

But that is all they are; moments of brilliance from a player who, despite boasting more natural talent in his big toe than many players have in their whole body, flopped at Sunderland, disappeared at Dortmund and made a mockery of Manchester United’s decision to hand him Ryan Giggs’ number 11 shirt.

While Januzaj’s dazzling performance in Real Sociedad’s latest La Liga victory sent Twitter into a frenzy and had United fans wondering what might have been, it is important not to get carried away.

20/21 Premier League Table According To Football Manager 2021

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We have been here before with Januzaj and, amid reports from HLN linking the Belgium international with a £23 million move to Southampton and Brighton, it must be remembered that kind of Man of the Match display has often been followed by long spells of anonymity.

So it remains to be seen whether Januzaj can build on his finest performance in 2020 or whether this will be just the latest in a long line of false dawns.

Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images

Having said that, a man David Moyes once compared to a young Wayne Rooney during that staggering breakthrough season at Old Trafford was nothing short of unplayable, as high-flying Sociedad retained their place atop the Liga table with a 1-0 win at Cadiz that was far more comfortable than the score line suggests.

A sublime assist for Alexander Isak’s winner was the cherry on what was a quite dazzling display of speed and skill on the right-hand side.

“Adnan is in Wayne’s category. He’s in that territory, definitely, because of his ability,” Moyes said in 2014.

Six years on, could Januzaj finally be starting to live up to that undoubted potential?

Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

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