radamel Falcao's mother has admitted her son is hoping for "bigger and better things" after a desperately difficult season at Manchester United.
The 29-year-old Colombia international striker, who joined the club on loan from Monaco in September last year, has made just 28 appearances, 12 of them from the bench, and scored four goals, and all the indications are that United boss Louis van Gaal will not exercise an option to complete a permanent deal.
Now Falcao's mother Carmenza Zarate has admitted it has been a difficult time for her son and hinted his future could lie away from Old Trafford as he looks to resurrect his career.
She told a Colombian newspaper: "Not everything has been easy in Falcao's life. He has had some difficult moments in his career.
"They slowed his progress and prevented him from participating in important competitions like the World Cup, or have confined him to the bench, like in Manchester.
"I often remind him that after a test or a difficulty, blessings arrive. We hope for bigger and better things. God hasn't abandoned us and my son will become again what he has been, a goalscorer.
"Even if he's unhappy not to be in the starting XI, he has to accept the coach's decisions. It's not a normal situation given what he has experienced in his career, but it happens in football.
"If God shows him a new path, he'll leave Manchester; if not, he'll stay."
Despite her son's problems, Zarate refused to blame Van Gaal and his management style, insisting his treatment of other big-name players suggests he has nothing against the South American.
She said: "I believe what he (Van Gaal) does with Falcao is not personal because the same thing happens with Angel Di Maria and Robin Van Persie. It's his way of working, and you have to respect that.
"He (Falcao) has to prove results for the Manchester United executives, and we will see how he achieves that."
Falcao made his debut for United as a substitute in a 4-0 league victory over QPR on September 14 and started for the first time in the 5-3 defeat at Leicester a week later, opening his goalscoring account in a 2-1 win against Everton on October 5.
Meanwhile, Andrew Cole expects Falcao to return to his prolific best next year - whether that be at United or elsewhere.
"I look at Falcao and I still think he is a quality player," the former striker said. "If you look at his movement and what he has done for his national team, you know he scores goals.
"His record before coming here was phenomenal, absolutely ridiculous.
"I know he has had an indifferent time since coming to Manchester United and everyone is saying he can't score goals any more, but no - it isn't like that.
"He has not got as many as he would have liked when he came to Manchester United. But that doesn't mean he is a bad player. He is far from a bad player."
It seems unlikely that United will pay such a huge sum to acquire a player who has performed so poorly this season.
"I don't know whether United will keep him. The powers that be are considering it," Cole said.
"If he doesn't stay here next year and he goes somewhere else, he will score goals.
"You don't stop scoring goals because you have an injury or whatever.
"It might take a little bit longer to recover from the injury but once you get injured it doesn't mean you stop.
"He will score goals wherever. If he doesn't stay here he will definitely do that."