Depay vows to live up to his hefty price tag

LONDON • Memphis Depay admits that he is yet to justify the £31 million (S$60.7 million) that Manchester United paid for him last summer.

But the Dutchman can at least try to repay some of the fee against Danish minnows Midtjylland today. United go into the Europa League round-of-32 return leg at Old Trafford trailing 1-2.

Depay scored a crucial away goal in the first leg but has scored only two Premier League goals.

"No, not yet," he said when asked whether he had lived up to expectations. "I will continue to fight for it and I am trying to improve. You learn from mistakes and good moments will come."

Depay added that United assistant manager Ryan Giggs had been an inspiration to him.

"Ryan Giggs is a legend, he talks a lot with me, he gives me advice, he has experienced everything already so he can help me with lots of things," he said.

STRIVING FOR THE BEST

I will continue to fight for it and I am trying to improve. You learn from mistakes and good moments will come.

MEMPHIS DEPAY, Manchester United winger, on how he is working hard to justify his huge transfer fee and the high expectations surrounding him.

"He works a lot with me and he and Wayne Rooney give me lots to think about. That really inspires me because they are legends, I feel that I am doing something well with them."

Giggs has been mentioned as a possible successor to Louis van Gaal if the manager fails to improve United's form. Failure to overturn the tie today, having suggested that winning the Europa League might be the best chance of qualifying for next season's Champions League, will heap more pressure on van Gaal.

United are fifth in the Premier League, 12 points behind leaders Leicester City.

Van Gaal will make a late check on the fitness of goalkeeper David de Gea, who had to withdraw from the first leg after suffering a knee injury in the warm-up. Sergio Romero will continue if the Spaniard does not recover.

Rooney remains unavailable with the knee injury that is set to keep him out until late March, while Will Keane, Jesse Lingard and Cameron Borthwick-Jackson all picked up knocks during their FA Cup win at Shrewsbury.

The rising injury toll means van Gaal's squad is becoming increasingly stretched, particularly in the full-back positions, with Matteo Darmian, Phil Jones, Ashley Young, Marcos Rojo, Antonio Valencia and Luke Shaw all out of action too.

THE TIMES, LONDON , AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 25, 2016, with the headline 'Depay vows to live up to his hefty price tag'. Print Edition | Subscribe