Duo will learn from Robin
Former United forward Andy Ritchie says Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez should embrace the arrival of Robin van Persie rather than worry his presence will push them down the front line pecking order.
The Dutchman signed a four-year deal with the Reds last Friday and came off the bench at Goodison Park on Monday night for his United debut.
Many expect Wayne Rooney and van Persie to be Sir Alex’s first choice attacking pairing this season, but Ritchie believes Welbeck and Hernandez will still get their fair share of action and can only thrive in van Persie’s company.
“It’s a great opportunity for Danny and Chicha to learn from one of the world’s best,” Ritchie told ManUtd.com. “They’ve got to embrace the fact they’ll be playing alongside a fantastically, successful and decorated player whose at the top of his craft. When he’s on song I think he’s unplayable.
“I don’t think either should be afraid. If Manchester United didn’t think both had fantastic futures then they wouldn’t be here. Neither have anything to worry about – they should both embrace van Persie’s arrival and take as much as they can from a master.”
Like every other Red, Ritchie is hugely excited by the number of quality forwards Sir Alex now has at his disposal and insists you can never have too many top drawer strikers.
“The options the manager has in attack now are fantastic. I think everyone is excited to see Wayne and Robin play together but it’s not just about those two – seeing Robin alongside Hernandez and Welbeck will also be exciting,” added the former Red.
“You can never have too many strikers. I’ve been brought up on that as a player and a manager. When I was at Oldham Joe Royle used to have six strikers and everyone got games. When players of the quality of van Persie become available you’ve got to go for them. He would enhance any squad in the world, not just ours, and thankfully we’ve got him.
“Some people have talked about him being older than the kind of players we usually sign, but we’ve always said in football that players come into their prime around 29/30 and I for one think he’s in his prime, so it’s great timing for us.
“The big thing for Robin is to keep fit. The demands on the modern-day footballer are greater than ever before and you have to be able to look after yourself if you want to keep playing late into your 30s. Just look at the example Ryan [Giggs] and [Paul] Scholes have set and who’s to say Robin can’t follow the same regime and be a fantastic player for us for four years and even longer.”