Donny van de Beek finally got his long-awaited Manchester United start in a match of significance and he didn’t disappoint.
The Dutchman was not directly involved in a United goal as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men ran riot against RB Leipzig in the closing stages.
But, operating at the tip of the diamond formation in the no.10 role, van de Beek passed the ball prudently and kept things ticking over with ease.
Van de Beek took the place of the so-often indispensable Bruno Fernandes, and while he doesn’t take as many risks as the Portuguese talisman, he was just as effective in keeping possession and tiring out the RB Leipzig defence.
What can sometimes goes unnoticed about van de Beek is his relentless work off the ball.
United’s first major summer signing worked tirelessly this evening, and this has been reflected in a remarkable stat by popular United twitter account UtdArena.
UtdArena report that van de Beek covered over 10,000m in just 70 minutes before being replaced by Fernandes.
Fred covered the most of any player with 10,568m, but played the whole game, meaning van de Beek covered a staggering amount of ground during his time on the pitch.
But van de Beek does not waste his energy on lost causes; his greatest asset is his clever movement, creating spaces for his teammates in behind.
It was a great shift from the 23-year-old who has shown how effective he can be when starting a match. His diligent 70 minute stint helped allow United’s forwards to run riot in the final period of the game.
Do you want a crazy stat?
Fred covered 10,568m tonight which was more than anyone else. However, Donny van de Beek covered 10,060m in just 70 minutes!
143.7m per minute – Donny
117.4m per minute – Fred
— UtdArena (@utdarena) October 28, 2020