Facundo Pellistri showed in his debut that he could be a great alternative to Antony – Man United News and Transfer News
Manchester United managed to enter the Europa League quarter-finals on Thursday by beating Actual Betis within the second match with a 1-0 win and a 5-1 total win.
Erik ten Hag will likely be happy if his group justifies their pre-match stance that they do not wish to lose any draw, no matter opponent, rivalry and scoreline.
Marcus Rashford finished the game with his 27th goal of the season in the second half and the Dutch player will be delighted with his goal, but will be even more impressed by the right winger’s performance. Facundo Pellistri.
It took 892 days for the Uruguayan to start the Red Devils for the first time since returning to the club in 2020. And he definitely got his chance.
The Uruguayan international has demonstrated his ability to beat his man and play both inside and outside.
His decision disappointed him at times, but it was refreshing to see Antony try to take his man down instead of stepping in and shooting as he always did.
He successfully drove his man three times while tapping the ball 53 times. Whenever he came, he tried to play a game or two and integrate with his teammates.
He finished with a pass accuracy of 83%, including two completed long balls and one successful cross.
Choosing to stay wide and keep the width as is was another help and he used his speed to great effect and it’s clear to see he has the ability to play on the shoulder of the last defender.
And unlike Antony, Pellistri always rushed back to provide defensive cover. He was stubborn in the struggle and did not want to lose a single battle.
He won six ground duels while winning an interception and two fouls to relieve the pressure at critical points.
Perfect Antony alternative
The 21-year-old also had the chance to score his first goal for the club from a corner at halftime. After a close fight inside the six-yard penalty area, the ball fell to Pellistri, who was trying to lead the ball home with a half-volley.
Unfortunately he hit the post and Wout Weghorst was unable to send the ball home. The United manager did not remove it and kept it on, as a sign of how satisfied he was with his appearance.
“It’s about his training performance, you see him progressing, getting stronger. Good game against Leeds and Betis. It’s harder to start. But as the game goes on, he believed, you see his skills, dribbling, mids, running from behind, doing his defensive work,” the manager said after the match.
Pellistri is clearly offering something different compared to Antony, and with Alejandro Garnacho injured, this is a big shot for Pellistri and he definitely passed the audition.
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