We’re delighted to announce that Amad Diallo is Man Utd’s biggest baller

Another day, another humbling defeat for Manchester United.

After their thrilling Boxing Day comeback victory over Aston Villa, United supporters travelled to Nottingham with their heads high and chests out. No more false dawns, only three points to further reignite their season.

Only Erik ten Hag and his squad hadn’t read the script. Their 2-1 reverse against an exuberant Forest was the latest calamity in a season that’s becoming increasingly undistinguished.

Between the shoddy defending, ponderous midfield and strikers with less chance of scoring than you on New Year’s Eve, United had managed to puncture any optimism engineered through beating Villa.

But there was one source of hope. One for United supporters to cling onto like a rock on a cliff edge. And he’s a young man from the Ivory Coast with a big future.

Amad Diallo has been out for the last six months with a knee injury, but he returned to training earlier this month and instantly elevated United’s performance levels after replacing Antony at the City Ground.

With his quick feet and even quicker brain, Amad was a shot of pure adrenaline as Ten Hag’s side looked to salvage some respectability.

Every footballer is taught to pass and move from a single-digit age, but you’d be amazed how many forget the mantra when you have milliseconds to make a decision as thousands of spectators bellow oaths in your direction.

But doing the basics is enough for anybody to stand out in this United side; the difference between Amad and Antony made you question whether United signed the latter from North Cheshire Equestrian Centre rather than Ajax.

We saw Amad produce jaw-dropping pieces of skill during his loan spell at Sunderland last season, demonstrating that the 21-year-old has more dimensions than an episode of Doctor Who.

And the fearlessness of youth and the total faith in his ability meant Amad had the cojones to play some football when all his team-mates looked scared to put one foot in front of another.

Amad Diallo highlights vs Nottingham Forest
byu/restoiroh inreddevils

“In the second half, they [the attackers] were in the match,” Ten Hag said after the game. “I thought Amad Diallo came in really good, Alejandro Garnacho played a very good game, I think.

“How he fought for that all the time and prepared the goal, a good goal by Marcus Rashford.”

Writing on social media post-match, Amad said “I thank everyone who prayed for me during my injury. Being on the field today after five months was truly a special day for me.

“This team will come back stronger like it always has. I am proud and I thank God for allowing me to be on this team.”

Amad will surely be given more opportunities – aside from the aforementioned Antony, Garnacho veers from cocksure to cowed within the same game and Rashford remains streakier than your Saturday morning bacon.

It’s generally unwise to hang your hopes on a single player, especially someone as young as Amad. But it’s not like United have many better ideas in their clusterf*ck of a campaign.

And the boy is up to the task.

By Michael Lee

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