Manchester United progressed to the quarter-final of the FA Cup after a 2-0 win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Monday, courtesy of two headers from Ander Herrera and Paul Pogba in the first half.
Journalist Giancarlo Padovan, writing for Italian website Calciomercato, has provided a verdict on three Blues players after the west London club’s exit from the cup competition.
January signing Gonzalo Higuain is the first from the list and the Argentine striker had two opportunities to put his side in front, but failed on both occasions.
According to him, the former Napoli star was ‘slow’, ‘vague’ and ‘by far the worst’ player on the pitch against the Red Devils. Olivier Giroud, who is used in the Europa League and also scored last midweek, cannot be ‘worse’ than Higuain.
The second player is Mateo Kovacic, who is on loan at Chelsea from Real Madrid and Padovan was highly critical about the Croatia international. At his previous clubs Real and Inter Milan and the national team, Padovan says at most, the midfielder can make it to the bench.
He says Kovacic ‘has no blows, he has no initiative, he has no class. Against United he was no-one’.
Marcos Alonso is the third player criticised by the Italian journalist. The left-back was left surprised for United’s first goal as failed to mark Herrera.
Padovan says Alonso is a ‘declining’ fullback, who once knew how to attack even though he was not good at defending. That no longer seems to be the case with him as he ‘does neither’ now. The Spaniard’s got worse with both defending and attacking.
The pressure is on Maurizio Sarri, whose side will face Malmo at home on Thursday before taking on Manchester City in the EFL Cup final on Sunday.