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Seeing as Jose Mourinho has already stated that he expects Memphis Depay to leave Manchester United in January, it'll be expected that a host of potential suitors will be all scrambling to secure his signature.
On top of playing a total of just eight Premier League minutes this season, Mourinho's strong comments on Depay's situation would suggest there's no way back for the former PSV Eindhoven star. “I have to say that in the past couple of months my decisions in relation to Memphis were influenced by the feelings and information that he would like to leave in January and that we were going to have a real offer that we would be willing to accept,” mused the Portuguese boss.
Here's a list of interested parties and the suitability of Depay joining them.
At this stage, the move that would appear most logical to the Dutchman is joining Everton. Aside from the chance to stay in England and link up with a fellow Dutchman in Everton manager Ronald Koeman, the Toffees boss has also recently spoken that he'd be interested in Depay if available. “If there is any opportunity then of course I’m interested,” said Koeman.
“I was interested at Southampton, that has not changed. We have to be patient but we will do business in January.”
Yannick Bolasie's injury means Everton are in the market for a wide player and signing for them would almost certainly see Depay receive greater playing time, but with strong competition from the likes of Kevin Mirallas, Ross Barkley, Enner Valencia, Gerard Deulofeu and Aaron Lennon, it still won't be easy for him to be a nailed on starter, either on the flank or in a central attacking location. This was something Danny Blind, Holland's national manager, touched on aptly, observing: “It has come to a stage where it might even be hard for him to get into the Everton side.
“On the wings at Everton they have players who will be serious competition for him. If those wingers stay, then it won’t be a piece of cake for Memphis to become a regular at Everton.”
Courtesy of Julian Draxler's big money move to PSG, Wolfsburg could do worse than signing the want away Depay as his replacement. Although Depay's not yet at the level of Draxler, the signing would add some much needed attacking impetus and speed to the Wolves' attack, who are currently languishing in 13th place on the Bundesliga table.
In all likelihood, he'd most likely be able to play in his favoured left wing role should he join the Volkswagen owned outfit – something that would appeal to him massively.
Depay will importantly have some knowledge of the club too, as he faced off against them in the Champions League last term with United. All things considered, moving to the Bundesliga would appear unlikely for the 22-year-old, but, nonetheless, it wouldn't be a bad destination for him to rebuild his career if he gave it a shot.
AS Roma are another club of high stature to reportedly show an interest in the United struggler. But with Depay's preferred position being on the left-wing, it's hard to imagine him being a guaranteed started with the Giallorossi. If he was a little more suited to playing on the right, he could've done a job with the brilliant Mohamed Salah off to the AFCON in January. As things stand, however, fighting for a place with Diego Perotti and Stephan El Shaarawy would probably be a battle he'd lose, such is the trust Luciano Spalletti already has in them.
Sitting second in Serie A, Roma need players that will come in and make a definite impact, not someone like Depay that's not guaranteed to arrive and immediately hit the ground running.
The fact Vincenzo Montella prefers to organise his side into a 4-3-3 formation is one reason why Depay might be keen on joining AC Milan. Vying for a spot with the Rossoneri's creative, intelligent Giacomo Bonaventura may be another obstacle he couldn't overcome, but he could still be a handy backup for the Italian. M'Baye Niang and Jose Sosa have, at times, underwhelmed when filling in for Bonaventura, so Depay may offer something a little different with his direct, all-action approach.
Indeed, having another option for Bonaventura, who's more of a subtle, imaginative chance manufacturer, might just work out well for Montella in certain situations too.
Watch the first episode of Football Whispers TV in full here.