With Manchester City having a seamlessly bottomless pit of cash many scoffed at Fergie repeated statements that there was no value in the market as admittance that United no longer had the money to sign the best player. David Silva, Yaya Toure and Edin Dzeko all joined our neighbors all making their own personal jibes towards United. The supposed humiliation was complete when United signed unknown winger Bebe from Portugal for around the same fee as Dutch star Rafael Van Der Vaart joined Tottenham for the minimal fee of 8 million.
While Bebe is still a very much ‘wait and see’ case. Fergie has had the last laugh on his signings Javier Hernandez and Chris Smalling.
When United announced signed Hernandez I wasn’t the most excited about his impending arrival after seeing the disaster that was Manucho. Then in the hope of a French defeat in the World Cup I tuned into the Mexico vs France match in group A. An hour had gone before something sensational happened, Hernandez was put through and I watch with amazement as he went around Lloris with ease and tapped in it the net to the joy of Mexico and Irish fans everywhere. I was further impressed when Hernandez smashed the back of the net to score against Argentina. After those two goals I was convinced he wasn’t going to be another false dawn.
Javier Hernandez has then become a fans favorite with his kissing of the badge, scoring of important goals and just the natural feel good factor he has brought to the club. All for the price of 6 million pounds.
While Javier Hernandez burst onto the scene at United, Chris Smalling has been slowly growing in stature at the club. Like Hernandez, Chris was signed right under everyone noses and to be honest I wasn’t exactly jumping for joy when it was announced we had sign the Fulham starlet. It must have affected Chris because he’s form suffered for the rest of his days at Fulham and I worried did we spend 10 million too much on an average defender, when we have Johnny Evans around who had been impressing at the time.
However, Chris impressed in displays against Rangers and Scunthorpe, but many suggested that was not a true challenge and we couldn’t take too much out of it. I agreed, but it looked like we had signed a decent player. Then came Chris Smalling’s biggest test, against Stoke City and their giant striker Kenwye Jones. Although Hernandez scored, I was left amazed at how well Chris had performed. Chris then went on to put in sterling performances against big sides like Man City and Marseille and come out with clean sheets in both. Today both Chris Smalling and Hernandez were pivotal in our 4-0 victory over Wigan, which has left me questioning….which was the better buy?
Well look at stats:
Hernandez 29 appearances (14 starts)
Smalling 21 appearances (14 starts)
Hernandez 13 goals
Smalling 10 clean sheets
Both have made the same amount of starts and Hernandez has managed 13 goals and United have kept 10 clean sheets when Smalling has started or come on from the bench. So the stats tell you how impressive they have been.
Conclusion: With Evans lack of form and Rio’s niggling injuries then you can’t underestimate how important Smalling has been. He has come in and showed real maturity whether he’s along side Rio, Vida or Evans. However, due to the amount of important goals he has popped up with (e.g Valencia, Stoke, Blackpool, Wolves e.t.c) he has to just take it for me.
Still though 16 million for two absolute gems shows Fergie’s genius once again and if only we could get another two in the mould of Edwin Van Der Sar and Paul Scholes we would very happy!