Manchester United fans divided over Guillermo Varela performance

by Leo Nieboer

Manchester United fans were divided in their assessment of Guillermo Varela after his display in the 1-1 draw against Liverpool in the Europa League on Thursday.

The Uruguayan, after a resilient performance at the weekend against West Ham, kept his place in the side despite the availability of Matteo Darmian and Antonio Valencia ahead of the seismic clash with Liverpool.

He was unable to maintain the lofty standards he set on Sunday, however, and was promptly hooked at half-time by Louis van Gaal. Some Man United fans were dismayed by the 23-year-old’s performance:

Others, however, were more sympathetic towards Varela:

Frustration towards Varela is understandable. After all, United had taken the lead and were in the ascendancy before his defensive fragility allowed Philippe Coutinho to kill off the tie.

And yet, to place all the blame on Varela is unjust. We ought to remember that he is young, inexperienced and susceptible to the occasional off day. He hardly covered himself in glory for Liverpool’s goal, but questions must also be asked of Chris Smalling and David De Gea, alongside a wider inquest regarding United’s shambolic first leg performance which essentially decided the tie.

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