He may not have had a vintage season at Old Trafford so far this year, but Raphaël Varane is likely to be lining up for his country in the World Cup final this Sunday.
The Manchester United central defender hasn’t been at his best this season, so maybe his run to the World Cup final with France will kickstart his season. It could be just what he needs to gain some momentum and get back into the sort of form he is capable of.
That might seem harsh as Varane hasn’t been bad. But Old Trafford regulars know that the Frenchman is such a quality player, and he has just dropped below his usual high standards this season.
Varane’s France are favourites to win the 2022 World Cup
So, is Varane likely to be returning to Old Trafford with another World Cup winners medal? According to the bookmakers, he has a good chance, as in the latest World Cup odds France are the 5/6 favourites to win the trophy by any method. But Argentina isn’t far behind in the betting; they are 10/11, showing just how close the bookmakers are expecting this match to be.
Varane and France should fear no one though. The France squad is immensely talented, and a lot of these players, Varane included, played in the side that won the 2018 World Cup in Russia. So they have experience and know-how in abundance.
????#FRA— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) July 15, 2018
France have won the 2018 FIFA #WorldCup in Moscow! #FRACRO // #WorldCupFinal pic.twitter.com/fZhmJmxjVh
They also have some of the most exciting young prospects in world football, and should they fail to win on Sunday, the chances are they will be in the hunt for more trophies over the coming years.
But this is a World Cup that Varane and France will believe they can win. Yes, Lionel Messi is an obvious threat. But if France can shut off the supply line to the former Barcelona man, there is no reason why Varane can’t return to Manchester with a second winners medal.
When is Varane likely to return for the Red Devils?
After Sunday’s final, the chances are that Erik ten Hag will give his players that are competing this weekend a couple of days off. This means Varane might not be available for the fixture against Nottingham Forest when the Premier League season resumes after Christmas.
United do have the added advantage of not playing until the 27th of December though, unlike most teams who will be playing on the 26th. So, there is a chance the extra day might enable Varane to be available for the home match against Steve Cooper’s team.
This club, this team, your support !! ? pic.twitter.com/i4k9WxRLbn— Raphaël Varane (@raphaelvarane) September 4, 2022
Whenever Varane comes back though, whether it be against Forest, or for the Wolves game on New Year’s Eve, let’s hope he’s back to his immaculate best.
Mid-season breaks for international competitions can sometimes not be helpful for a player who is in good form pre-tournament. We’ve seen this before with the players who go to the Africa Cup of Nations in good form and can’t reach that same high level in the second half of the season after they return.
But on the flip side, going to a competition slightly out of form, and doing well there, could be the catalyst for a better second half of the season. And for all United fans, let’s hope the latter is the case with Raphaël Varane.
- Erik ten Hag confirms double Man Utd injury boost ahead of Newcastle clash
- Man Utd defender Luke Shaw agrees fresh four-year contract
- Sheikh Jassim believes new Owners’ and Directors’ Test will not affect his Man United takeover
- Erik ten Hag to make decision on futures of Scott McTominay and Victor Lindelof
- Manchester United’s debt rises to almost £1 billion
- Erik ten Hag wants Andre Onana to provide competition to David de Gea next season
- Preview: Newcastle United vs Manchester United – prediction, team news, line-ups
- Man Utd goalkeeper Tom Heaton confirms he is out for a few weeks with an ankle injury
- Man Utd could lose Alejandro Garnacho to international duty in late May
- Bruno Fernandes wins Manchester United’s Player of the Month award for March