22-year-old Guillermo Varela has received the chance of playing for the Red Devils during the club’s injury crisis. The Uruguayan full-back was the first signing made after the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson in 2013, three years later he has finally had the chance to break into the first-team.
Varela spent the 2014-15 season on loan to Real Madrid B team, under the management of Zinedine Zidane. Real Madrid wanted to sign Varela last summer, but according to reports manager Louis Van Gaal rejected the deal.
Rojo impressed by Varela
Marcos Rojo told MUTV: “I am very happy for him as he has been playing well.” Varela has already appeared six times for Manchester United and his debut was against Wolfsburg in a 3-2 defeat in the Champions League. But he played a vital role against Arsenal not long ago, keeping tabs on winger Alexis Sanchez and also doing his bit for two goals of the game too.
Varela has already been compared to fellow countrymen Gabriel Heinze, an ex-Manchester United player who had good work rate and aggression to track back. Heinze was also not afraid to go help out in attack, similar signs being shown by Varela too. The Argentine defender also mentioned: "In the last few months we have spent a lot of time together and we have come really good mates. He’s a really good guy, a great person and a big player for United.”
South American talent
His hard work at the club hasn’t gone without credit as he has been handed a call-up to Uruguay’s national squad. As a result, the defender could possibly be in line for his first cap with his country play friendlies against Peru and Brazil in March. His national side have their own injury concerns, similar to Manchester United, and he may get the chance to break through once again, this time for his country.
Varela is really good at intercepting the ball from his opponents and likes to dribble a lot down the wings with his pace. His crossing ability has started to improve with the more game time he receives. Due to his height though, he can find it difficult to defend against someone who is good in aerial duels. The full-back has been caught out of position a few times, which has caused him to commit to some tackles. Football legend Zinedine Zidane mentioned this sometime ago on Varela: “He will make it to the top." This could be a big confidence booste for him understanding that someone has identified his abilities already.