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Memphis Depay To Provide Another Manchester United Audition In Must-Watch Derby Match

Few players have had such a fantastic year as Lyon's Memphis Depay
Few players have had such a fantastic year as Lyon's Memphis Depay

A vocal portion of Red Devils have been clamouring for Manchester United to activate Memphis Depay’s buy-back clause following the dynamic Dutch dazzler’s exceptional 2018.

In the Derby Rhône-Alpes taking place this Friday evening, Olympique Lyonnais star Depay can make a further statement to dispel ongoing rumours about his attitude and provide a further glimpse at his prodigious talent to flirt with clubs around the continent.

Lyon’s season so far has been a relative melange, highlights being a shock 2-1 win over Manchester City in the Champions League, but also suffering a 5-0 capitulation to PSG to leave any serious sense of a French title challenge in jeopardy. Furthermore, back-to-back draws in Europe to fail to capitalise on their opening fixture success.

Two other losses in Ligue 1 perch Lyon in fourth behind Lille, Montpellier, and runaway league leaders Paris Saint-Germain.

Few matches are as important in a season however to Les Gones then the derby with Saint-Etienne, which will be held at Lyon’s home stadium of the Groupama in the opening fixture of this gameweek, and with Saint-Etienne perched just a single point behind in fifth, a win for the visitors would see them leapfrog their East France rivals.

Manchester United fans should take a keener interest in most in the match, with Memphis Depay taking to the field and hoping to wrack up his tally after his brace against Guingamp a fortnight ago.

United sold the winger to Lyon at the beginning of 2017 after failing to live up to the price tag the Red Devils had conceded to bring him - as the then-Eredivisie top goalscorer - from PSV Eindhoven in the summer of 2015, but sensibly included a buy-back clause that has now got United fans melting.

Since his move to France, Depay has gone on to be one of the standout performers in Ligue 1. He has scored 16 goals and set up 13 more in 2018; cumulatively that adds up to a cumulative involvement in 41 goals in 52 games for club and country.

Furthermore, his contribution to the Netherlands national side has also commanded attention of late; most recently with the cheekiest of panenka penalties against France to help the side take one step into propelling into the UEFA Nations League Finals.

His affection for Manchester United - despite his unsuccessful initial spell - was apparent when he proclaimed that the city will ‘always be red’ on social media during his recent visit to face their perennial rivals, as well as being pictured wearing the jersey before Manchester Derby Day.

With a real work-in-progress front-line being in place at United, the idea of Depay returning to romp either down the right or provide some competition to Anthony Martial on the left wing in the foreseeable future is one that remains still fervently realistic in the minds of Red supporters.

Lyon versus Saint-Etienne kicks off at 20:00 (GMT). You can follow the match live with the link provided below.

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