Antonio Valencia must be brought back for one final Manchester United game
As much as we want to see young players feature in United’s final game of the season, it’s time to bring back Antonio Valencia too.
This season has not worked out satisfactorily for Valencia or United, but he deserves one last chance to say goodbye.
Valencia has not figured for United since January 2, in a 2-0 win at Newcastle.
Since then the Ecuador international has had a spell out injured, and then just been left out by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, with his contract not renewed.
Valencia began the season as club captain, and has been a terrific servant for the club over the past decade.
Replacing Cristiano Ronaldo was impossible, and Valencia had an unenviable task at United.
In buying a winger for £16 million from Wigan, United set expectations low.
Valencia outperformed his transfer fee and went on to win league titles under Sir Alex Ferguson in 2010/11 and 2012/13.
He has racked up 338 appearances for United, scoring 25 goals.
The most disappointing aspect to Valencia’s United spell was that he went backwards when handed the number seven shirt and could not kick on.
In recent seasons he converted to play as a right-back, and did far better than could have been expected.
It’s clear now is time up, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer should give Valencia his due and bring him back for one last appearance.
He was pictured in training last week, raising the possibility that he does have one last showing in him.
Valencia has been a true professional over the past decade and deserves to say goodbye to the fans at Old Trafford.
There is little to play for against Cardiff although it would be nice to finish the season on a high.
Ashley Young being dropped is long overdue. Valencia should have one final run out, even if it has to be from the bench.