Manchester United youngster Adnan Januzaj’s career has gone awry since the departure of former boss David Moyes two-and-a-half years ago, not unlike the Scot’s, yet there were fleeting moments during the 2013/14 campaign when the pair seemed a match made in football heaven.
Januzaj began life at United with such promise, winning the free kick converted by Wayne Rooney to make it 2-0 on Premier League debut against Crystal Palace, bagging both goals in a 2-1 victory at Sunderland, his first start, and triumphantly changing the game as sub with his side behind at home to Stoke.
The Brussels-born attacker’s precocious skill shone like a lone beacon during an otherwise dark season for the Red Devils, but the departure of Moyes following a 2-0 defeat to his old club Everton in April 2014 seemed to sap the life out of Januzaj, who has scored one goal in 33 games for the club since.
Another loan move beckons, following three fruitless months at Borussia Dortmund during the first half of last term, but if anyone can get the best out of Januzaj, it might be Moyes.
Hot on the heels of Sunderland’s capture of the 53-year-old to replace new England gaffer Sam Allardyce at the Stadium of Light helm, one of the summer’s more predictable transfer rumours is doing the rounds, courtesy of the Daily Mail and a couple of red tops.
Moyes ‘is set to enquire’ about Januzaj’s availability, according to the Mail, who have little else to say on the subject, with the Mirror and the Metro merely repeating this line.
The Black Cats have yet to make a signing so far this summer, while ten men have left the north east for pastures new, so there’s likely to be a flurry of activity once the gaffer beds in.
Incidentally, former Aston Villa, Wigan and Newcastle winger Charles N’Zogbia appears to be on trial at the perennial Premier League survivors, scoring the winning goal with Moyes looking on away to Rotherham and travelling with the Sunderland squad for pre-season training in France.
Sunderland are 7/2 to land a Premier League top-ten finish in 2016/17.