Yesterday a friend of mine asked me who my favourite United player was. I expected an answer to just role off my tongue and I was shocked it didn’t, I couldn’t actually think of my favourite player.
I actually had no idea, it used to be Ronaldo, he was just the ultimate footballer, and he had everything, even the arrogance which makes me such a big fan of people like Mourinho.
I just didn’t have an answer, I like players of the Cantona model, types of players who are geniuses’ and know just how good they are themselves. I’ve always found these kind of players appealing.
Both Cantona and Ronaldo had a special aura, something you can’t explain but you know it’s there.
They gave us the ability to go into every game knowing we could win. This I believe is something we are now missing, in a way, we have lost our special aura, when we lost Cantona we lost it for a while, but regained it with Ronaldo, but then we lost Ronaldo, and now we need to regain it.
Although sometimes Rooney is that player, when he plays, we often know we can win, he’s a great player, but he just lacks that special ‘factor.’
His name on the team sheet won’t scare the opposition before the match in the way Ronaldo and Cantona would. Saying that though he’s still a player who opponents are wary of and judging by his talent they always should be wary of him.
Both Cantona and Ronaldo had great unpredictability about their play. You never knew what they were about to do next, one second they could be stood around doing nothing, the next they are celebrating a goal after dribbling it past your entire team.
I’m not saying we are a bad team, we are obviously the best team in England. As United we always strive to improve, even if we won the Champions League this year we would still strive to improve. That’s what all great teams do.
I just feel as though we are missing our cherry on top, so to say. We need that genius back again.
Some would argue Sneijder, and maybe he is the right guy, is definitely worth a try. The vast amount we would probably have to pay for him may turn out to be worth it in the impact he would have in 5 years at United.
Often I hear people saying that Fergie doesn’t buy established players, he prefers to buy in youngsters and bring them up in the United way. Yes he does, but look at Cantona.
He was an established player when we bought him from Leeds and look how much of an influence he had in what became two decades of United dominance.
I do not know what impact Sneijder would have, he is obviously not Cantona, but he does have the creativity side of his game that Cantona did, and he would be our playmaker.
He would bring that unpredictability we are often missing in our attempts to break down 10 man defences.
My favourite player is always the playmaker and it just suddenly hit me that what I was personally missing in a favourite player – the main playmaker – was something that we as a club are missing.
I am not saying that Sneijder would solve all of our problems. I am not saying he will bring with him that Cantona/Ronaldo aura, but I feel after a bit of time at the club, he might quite possibly be the player we have been missing and may even restore that aura for us, that at times we lack.
By Luke Joseph – @LukeJoseph1