Robin Van Persie’s boots are big boots to fill and Danny Welbeck appears to have accepted the challenge with open arms scoring a brace vs. Aston Villa on Sunday. With Manchester United losing their last two consecutive Premier league games, both at home, an away trip turned out to be a relief as the red devils claimed a 3-0 win at Villa Park, an important 3 points closing the gap between them and spurs to only 2 points. The England Striker has been forced out of position recently with Van Persie taking the centre stage meaning he has been positioned out wide which hasn’t provided him with the best of times as you can tell its not his natural position.
It appears to me that the more time Danny Welbeck has on the ball the more panicked he becomes and thus leads me to conclude that he is an instinctive player that needs to be in the box. United’s play vs. Villa definitely suited this and with Welbeck doubling his season tally to four, the other two both coming against Swansea in the first game of the season, and both of Sunday’s goals were first touch into the back of the net after the ball had come in from an offensive right-hand side force of Rafael and Valencia. The first goal, should be credited to Rafael after his tenacity enabled him to cross the ball in under pressure on the by-line, where the ball was met by the head of youngster Adnan Januzaj, the ball then ricocheted off the back post and without giving the villa defence a second to react Welbeck had already put the ball in the back of the net. Three minutes later, the Man United number 19 picked the ball up in the middle of the park, after a poor villa clearance, he then sprayed the ball out wide to Valencia and after he made the pass, the drive he made to get himself into the box and onto the end of the one-two simply deserved him a goal in it’s own right, he was rewarded as the low ball in by Valencia perfectly ran into Welbecks stride and he struck the ball first time into the top corner.
Welbeck continued to show this desire through the 90 minutes he was on the pitch, having a total of 5 shots on goal, 3 on target, meaning he was hitting the target every 30 minutes which is exactly the same as the Swansea game. Only two of his chances were considered to be clear-cut and this meant that the Man United Striker had a clear-cut chance conversion rate of 100% which should surely enhance his protest of playing up-front. Evidence that helps to emphasise my point that his play is instinctive and that he deserves his chance to play as a striker, possibly with Robin Van Persie (a point that is heavily debated), is the fact all of his shots on Sunday came from within the 18 yard box proving he is able to frighten defences in the premier league if he is managing to get in these positions so frequently.
Not only was Welbeck causing trouble in terms of shooting and attacking but in general possession of the ball after he had scored, Aston Villa had seen that they weren’t able to handle his pace and this meant that whenever Danny had the ball they instantly pressed him and tried to bring him down to prevent Man United developing their play at speed, this was shown as Welbeck was the most fouled player on the pitch winning free-kicks 4 times for United. The only down side to this and improvement I can think of for Danny’s game in this sense is that his discipline was poor as after every time he was fouled he got up and pushed and shoved whatever Villa man brought him down, this meant that he got himself unnecessarily booked, whereas he could have just shrugged it off as he had already won the free-kick.
Confidence is a key factor that Danny Welbeck can take away from this game, along with the Barclays Man of the Match award and Two goals. With more fluent and attractive play displayed by the young England Striker, he will start to win the fans over. If he can continue to perform like that and if David Moyes can provide the chances for him to play as a centre forward then it can only help to cement his position in the England squad for the World Cup.