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Armed with pace and power, Antonio Valencia has become one of United’s most consistently solid performers.

Formery a potent attacking weapon for the Reds, the Ecuadorian has recently been transformed into a dynamic, dependable right-back. Valencia arrived in the summer of 2009 from Wigan Athletic, where he had spent three years, initially on loan from Villarreal, after catching the eye for Ecuador at the 2006 World Cup. He made 83 appearances for the Latics, scoring seven times and catching the eye of several bigger clubs. Antonio turned down the chance to join Real Madrid, but couldn't resist the opportunity to move to Old Trafford. Hopes that a superb maiden season could be replicated were dashed when he suffered a horrific ankle injury in United's Champions League draw with Rangers in September 2010. However, Valencia made a breathtaking return to fitness and form within six months, playing a key role as the Reds regained the Premier League title. Valencia's third season at Old Trafford proved eye-catching, as a glut of assists took United to within a whisker of a 20th league title, and his personal excellence was rewarded with a clean sweep at the club's end-of-season awards bash. Michael Owen's departure in the summer of 2012 gave Antonio the chance to inherit the Reds' famous no.7 shirt, but he reverted to the no.25 shirt the following season. Fast forward to 2015/16 and Valencia ended an injury-disrupted campaign on a high in the FA Cup final, drilling in a low cross that led to Jesse Lingard firing home the winning goal in extra-time. And in 2016/17, under the guidance of Jose Mourinho, Valencia enjoyed one of his finest seasons since joining the club. With his transformation from winger to right-back now complete, Antonio was one of the team's standout performers and was voted Player of the Year by his team-mates for the second time. Valencia was named captain for United's Europa League final win over Ajax and was rewarded for his displays with a new two-year deal, keeping him at the club until 2019. After Wayne Rooney's departure he often captained the side in the absence of Michael Carrick and was one of Jose's most reliable players in 2017/18, making 38 starts in all competitions. Valencia is also in the top 50 United appearance holders, with plenty of time to add to his total.

Read Less About Antonio Valencia
  • Position

    Defender

  • Country

    Ecuador

  • Date of birth

  • Joined

  • United debut

    v Chelsea (N)

I want to put a shift in for United, the team I love. I always want to give everything.

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