So this Monday morning I wake up and do what I do every morning, make myself a coffee and sit in front of the computer for a few minutes going from one newspaper website to another, reading the football pages, seeing if there’s any fresh news coming out of Old Trafford whether it be transfer news or whatever, and what I do I stumble across? An article in the Daily Mirror, it centres on Angel Di Maria’s imminent transfer from United to French club Paris Saint Germain. Thiago Silva claims Paris Saint Germain are a step up from Manchester United.
Last season United fans witnessed what was, in all honesty, a very disappointing season from Di Maria. He was given the number 7 shirt, a shirt previously worn by Bryan Robson, George Best, Eric Cantona and David Beckham, legends of Manchester United who knew what it meant to pull on the United number 7 shirt, players who knew what was expected of them. Yes, Di Maria got off to a great start with United, scoring on his Old Trafford debut from a free kick against Queens Park Rangers, it seemed his high transfer fee was going to be justified after all, winning Di Maria the Manchester United player of the month award for September, he also won the goal of the month for September for his goal against Leicester City.
However, a couple of months into his 5 year United contract his form begin to dip somewhat and very disappointingly for United fans, the manager and the whole United team, Di Maria never regained that early form that had impressed so many. Of course, months later he would have to go through the horrendous experience of having his house in Prestbury targeted by burglars, but by the time that happened well into the New Year, Di Maria had long looked a shadow of his former self. Only recently Di Maria has come out and said that he wasn’t going to let his own disappointments of last season get to him, he was looking forward to the new season with the Red Devils. United fans were lead to believe that Di Maria was going to knuckle down and work his socks off for United. Apparently not….
Now, I’m sure you’ve heard the old adage, don’t believe what you read in the papers, usually good advice, but it was in fact the press who were reporting that Di Maria was looking for a way out of United, despite his comments that I’ve just mentioned about him wanting to stay at United and work for his place in the team, words that were clearly intended for United fans. If you cast your mind back to last summer, PSG were indeed in the running to sign him from Real Madrid, unfortunately for them they ran into some UEFA Financial Fair Play trouble, something which newly rich clubs backed by foreign investors have a habit of running into, go and ask a City fan. This sanction imposed upon the Paris club by UEFA meant that for the time being Di Maria would not be going to Paris Saint Germain. Manchester United, an interested club for the signature of Di Maria from the beginning, succeeded in bringing the Argentine international to Old Trafford, for a record breaking club transfer fee of just under £60 million.
So it looks like Di Maria is well and truly off to Paris this time around.
We all saw those photographs of Di Maria stood with Marcos Rojo at the airport, ready to board the aeroplane and join United in America, only he didn’t. I have no way of knowing this and it’s just my opinion, but whilst Di Maria was in the queue to get on that plane he received a text or a phone call from his agent telling him the PSG deal was on, why else would he go to the airport and not board the plane? Like I said it’s just my opinion, but I will go further and say that whilst Di Maria was publically saying he wanted to stay at Old Trafford, wanting to work hard for the club following his disappointing first season blah blah blah, Di Maria and his agent were in fact working and looking for a way out of United to Paris. Di Maria was a flop at United, not worthy at all of the red shirt of Manchester United.
So let’s get back to that newspaper article I mentioned at the beginning. Thiago Silva, the PSG defender reckons Di Maria will be taking a step up when he joins the Paris club from Manchester United. Everyone’s entitled to their own opinion, but Silva is just abusing the privilege, the guy is obviously talking nonsense and making himself look a complete and utter wazzock in the process. To compare the two clubs of Manchester United and Paris Saint Germain is like comparing an Aston Martin to a clapped out Citroën Dyane. By the time Manchester United was winning its first European Cup after having to go through the tragedy of Munich and the rebuilding of the club, no one had heard of Paris Saint Germain, because it didn’t yet exist. The football club of Paris Saint Germain was founded in 1970, so as far as football clubs go it isn’t very old. It’s a club without history or heritage. It plays its domestic football in a league that never gets a mention when people talk about the best leagues in Europe, it just doesn’t. The past record of French teams in European competition is nothing to write home about at all, in fact it’s a very disappointing record to say the least. PSG’s average crowd for a Ligue Une game is well below 50,000. In a recent survey to find out the average attendance for matches in Europe, the Paris team only just made it into the top twenty.
The club has never been in a position to generate huge income through gate receipts, merchandise and so on, it’s a club that has only come to prominence due to the multi million euro Qatari take over a only a few years ago. So how Silva can say it’s a step up from United is beyond my understanding, clearly Silva doesn’t engage his brain before he opens his mouth. And whilst I’m talking about Thiago Silva, like Angel Di Maria, Silva isn’t a player that knows too much about club loyalty either. Since he made his breakthrough thirteen years ago in first team football, he has been at several clubs, never staying for too long, always jumping ship at regular intervals, PSG is his 7th club and PSG are very welcome to him.
Written by Richard Fenton.