Friday 15 December 2017

Radamel Falcao panned for performance against Preston as Twitter reacts to his substitution

Jack de Menezes

Things can’t get much worse for Radamel Falcao. He can’t seem to buy a goal at the moment, his future at Manchester United remains up in the air beyond the end of the season, and to make matters worse he was hauled off by manager Louis van Gaal during the FA Cup victory over Preston North End.

The decision to replace him with Ashley Young was certainly a surprise, but it appeared that Falcao himself was the most shocked at seeing his numbers go up on the fourth official’s board – once he eventually saw them.

A vine quickly emerged showing the 29-year-old striker squinting to see the number of the player departing, before realising that it was his own number 9. What caused even greater concern was that Falcao, once considered one of the most lethal finishers in the business, was taken off with United trailing 1-0 and replaced by Young - who has largely figured at left wing-back this season.

Falcao appeared frustrated with his own performance following the recent 1-1 draw with West Ham as he headed straight to the bench, but was quickly called back by Louis van Gaal, who perhaps had a positive word in his ear to try and lift his morale.

What won’t have lifted his morale is how quickly Twitter was taken over by Radamel Falcao jokes and memes, and even United fans got in on the act to vent their disappointment with his performances since securing a season-long loan in the summer from French side Monaco that is set to cost the club nearly £19m in fees and wages.

United do have the option of signing Falcao on a permanent deal at the end of the season, but as things stands you would suggest that any suggestion of activating the £43.5m clause in his contract would be immediately dismissed unless he improves his form considerably.

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