Home ยป Facundo Pellistri shines as Uruguay upset Lionel Messi’s Argentina away from home

Facundo Pellistri shines as Uruguay upset Lionel Messi’s Argentina away from home

by Vatsal Gupta

The international break hasn’t been kind to Manchester United.

Player performances aside, injuries to Marcus Rashford and Andre Onana make it a nightmare break for Erik ten Hag.

However, some players are still putting their best foot forward, and more importantly, getting crucial minutes at the international level that they aren’t at Old Trafford.

Facundo Pellistri was one such player for Uruguay who engineered a huge upset yesterday.

Uruguay beat Lionel Messi’s Argentina 2-0 away from home with Pellistri playing 88 minutes for Marcelo Bielsa’s side.

The United winger was a busy presence throughout as his side put on a thoroughly committed display, outworking the current World Champions.

Pellistri was stationed at his favoured right-wing position and did the “dirty work” diligently, regularly tracking back to help Ronald Araujo at right-back, who ended up being Uruguay’s best performer.

Bielsa used Pellistri as an outlet on the counter-attack, with the United winger attempting six dribbles, successfully completing four.

Uruguay finished the game with just 36% possession, so it doesn’t come as a surprise that Pellistri finished the game with just 24 touches.

However, his disciplined display will do more to impress Erik ten Hag than anything else.

The United manager has regularly asked his wingers to do work at both ends of the pitch so Pellistri’s contribution wouldn’t have gone unnoticed at Old Trafford.

Ten Hag has remained committed to making United one of the best transition teams in the world and Pellistri’s suitability for it looked perfect against Argentina.

The 21-year-old’s game looks to have grown leaps and bounds from his days of being a “head-down and run forward” winger who couldn’t be relied upon to do a solid job.

Ten Hag will hope that Pellistri’s growth at the international level, under the watchful eyes of Marcelo Bielsa gets transferred to the club level, especially as his attacking options look set to be thinned in January.

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