Date:3rd June 2011 at 1:48pm
Written by:
Gabriel Obertan

Time to move on?

Gabriel Obertan, is arguably about as popular with United fans as Imogen Thomas. While even the much-lamented Bebe has his defenders who point to his age and lack of top flight experience.

In the case of Obertan it’s been just under two years since he signed for United.

In those two years Obertan hasn’t really progressed, in fact last season seems to have been less effective than his first one.
Watching Obertan can be a frustrating experience, I’ve witnessed him several time for the reserves this season and his talents are obvious, although he can often look disinterested.

There’s no doubting he has skills but his attitude can leave a lot to be desired, which is one thing many Reds simply will not accept. A player who tries hard but lack the ability of others is one thing, but someone with bags of ability who basically can’t be *rsed isn’t going to win any Fan’s Player awards.

Obertan now seems to be at the point in his United career where he’s no longer considered an option for any game that’s even remotely important. In his first season Obertan made seven league appearances, the next season was the same. That in itself tells a story, Obertan’s simply not progressing of that there can be little doubt.

The question is “is there any point in giving him another season?” I’d actually argue there isn’t, although it may seem harsh on a relatively young player who’s yet to fulfil his first contract at the club, I just cannot see how Obertan can really be considered a first team option anymore.

There is a case to be made that United could give Obertan one more season, that with the Carling Cup and early FA Cup and Champions League games, you can never have too many skilful wingers. However the problem is it’s not just a case of having a skilful player available, it’s would United be hindering the progress of maybe a Ravel Morrison or a Bebe by persevering with a player who’s had his chances and failed to take them?

Personally I think it’s now time to face facts for both player and club, Obertan was a great prospect when Sir Alex Ferguson signed him. A graduate of the famous Clairefontein academy who had looked dangerous during his time at Bordeaux and Lorient-as well as the France Under 21 side, not many people were doubting the wisdom of bringing him to the club.

It’s difficult to make a strong case for keeping Obertan, who’s done very little to convince anyone he really is United material.

When it comes to moving the club forward and trying to not only usurp Barcelona but fend off the challenge from our domestic rivals, whether United sell or keep Obertan may not seem like a big deal. However as the past few seasons have proven its often the squad players who have helped make the difference in important games.

Obertan has had his chance now and I feel it may be best for both player and club if he moved on.

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