The next player on turn to be the subject of our player season review is a player that did not actually play for Manchester United this season. Andreas Pereira decided last summer that it was best for him to leave Old Trafford and go on loan to Valencia. He felt that he will not get as many chances to play regularly in first team in Jose Mourinho’s team and he moved back to Spain once again.
What do the numbers say?
First off, Pereira did not play as much as he expected he would play at Valencia. Marcelino’s side had a great season, finishing in the top four and having the best start to a La Liga campaign in club’s history. It was then that Pereira played more often, but as the season was getting closer to an end, the Brazilian barely played.
Pereira managed to get 23 appearances in La Liga, making 12 starts. That amounted to 1078 minutes, an average of 46.87 minutes per match. That is enough of an indicator that he almost never played full 90 minutes. In fact, only in 2018, Pereira played only two full 90-minute matches, one of them coming in Copa del Rey. Pereira scored once in La Liga, in the 6-4 win over Betis and completed three assists. His attacking numbers are not great, which could be also caused by him not playing that much and often getting substituted.
He made 1.2 shots per 90 minutes throughout La Liga campaign, half of them coming from outside of the box. He managed just 1.4 dribbles per 90, with 1.7 unsuccessful dribbles to his name too. Pereira was decent with creating chances, as he averaged 1.7 key passes per 90, though.
Was he an important player for the club?
Obviously, he was not important for Manchester United. Also, he was not very important to the successes Valencia had this season. Pereira played mostly in first part of the campaign, but even then he never really felt like someone Valencia are dependent on. It was all about Santi Mina, Goncalo Guedes and Rodrigo Moreno, while Pereira more and more struggled to adjust to playing as a wide midfielder in a 4-4-2 formation.
He played both as a left and right wide midfielder, but there was not too many differences in his displays. Sometimes they would be okay and sometimes not, but interestingly, he never got to a full speed when he was in the starting XI. One of his assists and his only goal in La Liga came after coming on, while in Copa del Rey he had some good moments. However, the other players in his positions were much better and it was expected that he would have less playing time than them.
Projection for the 2018-19 season
It will be interesting to see what the future holds for him. It is hard seeing Jose Mourinho putting too much trust into him, not only because of a season that was not so great, but also because the manager wanted the player to stay last summer. Pereira opted to do things differently and go out on loan and therefore another loan or even a transfer would seem more likely. If he stays in Manchester, it will be expected that Pereira gets a minor role in the squad.