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Expert ball-winner Antonio Valencia has “everything” a right-back should – Manchester United legend Nemanja Vidic

Expert ball-winner Antonio Valencia has “everything” a right-back should – Manchester United legend Nemanja Vidic

Former Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic has praised Antonio Valencia, stating that the Ecuador international is perfectly equipped to play at right-back.

Having commenced his United career as a winger, Valencia is now a fully-fledged right-back and has been one of the standout performers in that position in the Premier League this season.

Vidic told ESPN: “I loved playing with him and against him because he’s an honest player. It’s difficult to beat him one-on-one. He’s strong, he’s powerful, he has everything.

“I like to see him at right-back because he can still go forward and cross the ball, but he doesn’t have that obligation to be creative too much up front. It’s a good position for him.”

United have already won one trophy – the EFL Cup – this season and Jose Mourinho’s side have an opportunity to claim further silverware prior to the conclusion of the campaign in the form of the Europa League.

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United, who are fifth in the Premier League, return to action on Saturday with a home game against West Bromwich Albion.

How does Valencia compare to other right-backs in the Premier League?

Valencia has been excellent this campaign and has made more interceptions and blocks in the Premier League than many of the leading right-backs in the division.

His ball-winning expertise is also shown in his total of 38 tackles, which is the most of any United defender.

However, he is slightly behind Tottenham Hotspur’s Kyle Walker in terms of clearances made and tackles won.

Antonio Valencia has been successful with 61% of his attempted take-ons in the Premier League this season.

Antonio Valencia

Nemanja Vidic

Manchester United