After being written off by the masses (I won’t lie I lent towards getting rid of Nani too), Nani resurrected his career with a string of top notch performances putting in especially good shifts against Hull and Arsenal (The Nani see, Nani don’t before the first goal at the Emirates will be in highlight reels for years to come). It was thought he had finally turned the corner, got rid of the monkey on his back that was Ronaldo’s legacy and was now ready to build his own career at Old Trafford but all in 1 instance with a lunging tackle, he set himself back.
Following the red card Nani came out claiming that Sir Alex Ferguson is angry with him again and rightly so, as one of United’s inform players is set to miss 3 games including the Carling Cup final because a silly tackle. Some say the decision was harsh, he played the ball and the tackle, although he lept in, was only 1 footed rather than 2 but Nani himself will know, having been plying his trade in England since 2007, that tackling that way is always risky.
When Nani began performing again one of the first thing people attributed it to, is the fact that he had matured but at 23 years old we are not talking about a player that is exceptionally young, especially in footballing terms so for people to claim he was naive in tackling like that is nonsense. There was nothing malicious in the challenge but he still did it and must suffer the consequences.
Antonio Valencia has been a revelation on the right wing for United this season, so for Nani to come in and usurp his place is a testament to how well he has been playing. Prior to getting sent off he supplied the cross that lead to James Collins’ own goal but after his dismissal and Valencia came in at half time, Sir Alex was full of praise for the Ecuadorian who he claimed ‘changed the game’.
Ferguson’s words, as well as the fact that Valencia will be restored for the next 3 games under the jurisdiction of the English FA could mean Nani faces a fight to regain his spot in the United first team and if he fails to do so, sadly he has only himself to blame.