Donny van de Beek did not get a look in at the weekend in the 4-2 defeat to Leicester City.
Van de Beek has played just five minutes of Premier League football all season. In the Champions League he was given 45 minutes before being substituted against Young Boys.
Will Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reverse the trend against Atalanta on Wednesday night and start Van de Beek for the first time since the Carabao Cup defeat to West Ham?
Don’t bet on it given the Dutchman’s recent lack of usage, although there is a need to make changes amid a woeful run of form.
Nonetheless here is a look at three reasons why Solskjaer should recall the former Ajax star…
United need tenacity and creativity
United’s midfield of Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba were too passive at the weekend against Leicester. This probably means a recall for Fred and Scott McTominay – but Van de Beek is the alternative.
Van de Beek is a midfielder who offers a balance of quality in possession and tenacity off the ball.
Atalanta are a very strong side, with midfielders Maarten de Roon and Teun Koopmeiners both strong on the ball. United need to disrupt them and Van de Beek is capable of doing so.
Van de Beek has Champions League experience and despite the lack of recent action, he is a player United can rely on.
Van de Beek is fresh and motivated
The recent lack of action should work in Van de Beek’s favour. He will be fresh and highly motivated to make his mark.
If Van de Beek was given a start, he would know he has to perform or he could be waiting weeks for another one.
One big performance in a game like this could change his fortunes, given how dire United’s form is at present.
He looked frustrated on the bench after being snubbed in the last home game against Villarreal. Donny van de Beek still has not played in a Champions League game in front of fans at Old Trafford and he will be desperate to get a proper opportunity.
Atalanta won’t see it coming
The element of surprise should not be dismissed. A start for Van de Beek won’t be what Atalanta are expecting.
The Dutchman being selected could throw Atalanta’s game plan off and give United a slight edge.
This is where Solskjaer’s previous poor treatment of Van de Beek could be flipped on it’s head and used as an advantage if the manager is brave enough to recall the midfielder.
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