Could United’s midfield solution already be at the club?
Ilkay Gundogan, Luka Modric, Cesc Fabregas and even Paul Pogba are currently rumoured to be on David Moyes’ little black book of midfield targets, as the Scotsman hops his way around Europe like some 19-year-old backpacker.
But, the solution to our midfield woes could lie closer to home. About 40 minutes down the M61 there’s a creative central midfielder that scores, creates and dominates the midfield.
Nick Powell is only 19, and may not be the superstar name we jam into our search bars each day but there has never been a better time to give him a chance to shine. After all, we do not want another Paul Pogba on our hands.
Powell was bought from Crewe Alexandra for a fee believed to be in the region of £4m by Sir Alex Ferguson, but has to date only ever made two appearances. As a consequence and with a need to give him playing time Moyes loaned him to Wigan in the summer.
At Wigan, Powell has been deployed in a variety of positions from a number 10 to right-winger. But, at Crewe he was used in a two-man midfield until he slowly became a more attacking option, meaning he is experienced playing in the centre of the park.
Latics manager Uwe Rossler admits Powell is incredibly versatile: “Nick is a player who excites me, he can play everywhere. United used him in midfield, we’ve played him wide and upfront.
“I can play him as a No. 9 because he has a fantastic physique, strength, power and technique. Every time he plays for me he gives me 110 per cent and that is fantastic.”
At Crewe, the 19-year-old became known for his thunderbolt strikes from 30+ yards. I’m sure we all remember when he whipped a glorious curling strike into the top corner against Cheltenham in the League Two play-off final.
Since leaving for Wigan he has only furthered his goal scoring reputation, and is extremely highly regarded by many at the club. Powell, shone for the Latics yet again last week as he singlehandedly dismantled MK Dons, bagging a brace and setting up the third.
The 19-year-old is even getting some European football under his belt at the DW stadium. Yes, everyone might moan: “It’s only the Europa League” but it’s still a fantastic test for a teen.
In fact, Powell has scored three goals in five matches and has consistently dominated opposition outfits like Rubin Kazan.
As for what he can bring to United, it’s fairly obvious we miss someone who can produce driving runs from midfield, pick a killer ball and actually bury one from outside the area.
So maybe, just maybe the midfield gem that bursts into the opposition box, that arrives late to smash home in the hole, that picks that killer through ball has been lurking in the squad the whole time.
Maybe it’s time to give Nick Powell his chance, after all has there ever been a better opportunity?
Would you like to see Powell back at United this season or do you think he would be better remaining at Wigan for the rest of the season?