Why Donny van de Beek should start more for Manchester United
Manchester United got back to winning ways in the UEFA Champions League with a 4-1 win against Istanbul Basaksehir, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer starting a very attacking team.
Whilst Bruno Fernandes stole the headlines for his two goals, one of which being a fantastic volley in the opening minutes of the game, several other players starred for United, including Donny van de Beek.
The Dutchman started in a more defensive position than usual, playing alongside Fred as a defensive midfielder.
However, he was fantastic throughout the whole game, speeding up the tempo alongside Fred and Fernandes.
In fact, the Dutchman completed all of his dribbles throughout the game, having a staggering 73 total touches on the ball.
He also maintained a pass accuracy of 88 percent, which is remarkable considering that he is a creative midfielder that is willing to take chances and pass forward, and this was clear since he created two chances during the game, even sending Mason Greenwood through on goal to pass to Daniel James for the final goal.
Van de Beek was also outstanding defensively, putting in a number of tackles in key areas, solidifying the defence.
Starting alongside a more defensive midfielder in Fred, Matic or McTominay, Van de Beek seems to shine, being used as more of a box-to-box midfielder, whilst also being capable of playing as a deep-lying playmaker.
Through his play style, he ends up making other players play better, and as a result, the whole team starts to tick even more.
As a result, he earned the praise of several United legends, with Rio Ferdinand saying that he was very 'impressed' and that he thinks that he is "the one player in this squad who is happy playing one-touch, two-touch, keeping it simple... sacrificing parts of his game to help other people flourish."
Paul Scholes hailed the Dutchman for his performance, saying "Some of the one-touch, two-touch play in the first-half was excellent."
Former United player Owen Hargreaves also added that Van de Beek's performance was 'close to perfect' and that "He is so unselfish, he can just fit in and play the right balls everywhere."
Speaking after the game on his performance and particularly his change in position, Van de Beek said that "Some games I play number ten and sometimes the coach needs me in the control position. That is fine for me because before, when I played at Ajax, I was playing in those positions, so it is okay."
Manchester United's next game is against Southampton in the Premier League, and whilst starting the Dutchman may be a no brainer, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has opted to leave him out in the league on several occasions in the past, but after this performance, he might have no choice.