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Javier Hernandez: The Quintessential Footballer

It’s hard to believe that it’s been less than a year since Javier Hernandez joined Manchester United. Since officially joining the club on July 1, 2010, Chicharito has literally hit the ground running with the Old Trafford club. He’s already scored several critical goals in the Premier League season to keep United at the top of the table. And on Tuesday night, we saw how vital the Mexican player was when he netted both goals to send Manchester United through to the last 8 of the Champions League.

While his goals Tuesday night were simple tap-ins, they disguise one of his best attributes that sometimes is overlooked and that’s his positioning sense. Hernandez almost always seems to be in the right place at the right time. He has that striker instinct that makes him extremely dangerous in front of goal. On top of that, his speed is mesmerizing. He also has a good temperament which we saw Tuesday night even when he was jostled after the final whistle by frustrated Olympic Marseille players. He’s also deadly in the air and can jump great heights despite his small stature. But most importantly of all, he rarely misses chances.

He appears to be the complete player. It’s difficult to find a fault with him such is the talent he possesses. He is a star and an inspiration. All bottled inside a 22-year-old. Not bad for a reported £8m transfer fee.

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  1. jcmeinster

    March 24, 2011 at 1:38 am

    I hope He gets better and better as seasons pass ! I’m also a CHIVAS fan and follow Chicharito in MAN UTD. but now I’m so happy that Erick Torres is scoring for Chivas , I’m so exited about this young player ,cross your fingers hopefully He gets a call for Mexicos Men National Team .

  2. Ssejjemba Rashid

    March 17, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    The player is really fantastic compared to the period he has spent at oldtrafford.

  3. Allen

    March 17, 2011 at 1:25 am

    Don’t praise SAF’s signings too soon.

    One (hilarious) word:


  4. zviivz

    March 16, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    Torres cost 50 million pounds and he scored peanuts (pun intended).

  5. brn442

    March 16, 2011 at 3:01 pm

    The boy has done brilliantly in is first season. He does have to improve on his link play a bit and bulk up some but what a good piece of business by the Sir Alex and the Club.

  6. leslie

    March 16, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    little pea…? you mean Chicharito!!!!!
    Well, it’s to bad that people didn’t see his talent when he was playing for las chivas… all of a sudden everybody is like OMG i love chicharito…
    On the other hand, he has an amazing talent, and i think that he could possibly take the mexican team further on the next world cup…

    • Clampdown

      March 16, 2011 at 3:48 pm

      Why on earth would that be a good thing?

      USA! USA! USA!

  7. Sid

    March 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Chivas offered him to PSG….they said NO. LOL….

    • Gaz Hunt

      March 18, 2011 at 8:22 am

      I read somewhere that they didn’t take him because of the suspiciously low price.

  8. Clampdown

    March 16, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    I can haz sandwich?

  9. [OPTI]Madschester United

    March 16, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    “He appears to be the complete player”
    — Not sure I agree (yet). He still needs to work on his passing, first touch, and dribbling… they are quite poor compared to his finishing, positioning, and speed.

    If he can become good at these three additional skills, we have another World Superstar on our hands.

    • Dave C

      March 16, 2011 at 2:53 pm

      Yeah, “complete player” seems a bit over the top. I don’t think any one can claim to be a complete player. Can he hit 60 yard passes? Can he play center back? I doubt it. Just be happy with what he is – very good at what he does.

      • Troy

        March 17, 2011 at 4:03 am

        I agree. His finishing and positioning is second to none, however, he needs to work a little on his passing and crosses. I would say that he has some of the best football instincts in the world, but is not yet a complete player.

  10. Simon Burke

    March 16, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Best signing of season by a country mile.

    • James

      March 16, 2011 at 12:05 pm

      What about Van der Vaart?

      • [OPTI]Madschester United

        March 16, 2011 at 12:15 pm

        Who? He had a stellar first half season, but has reached the famous Tottenham level of mediocrity…

        • James

          March 16, 2011 at 12:28 pm

          Heh. Fair point, though I suppose that’s partially due to injuries. I reckon it doesn’t matter in the end, though.

  11. Caleb Castillo

    March 16, 2011 at 10:46 am

    I’ve been Chicharito’s fan since his scoring debut in 2006. I watched him explode in the Bicentario 2010, where he scored 8 goals in 5 games. I would’ve never thought that he would also make an impact in the Premier League, Chicharito has actually made me a Manchester United fan, I watch Manchester United now a bit more than I watch my mexican football team Las Chivas, where he originated from. Oh @BBC, and Chicharito did not play for Mexico in the qualification stage, because he’s a new talent, he was not that good back in 2008. His outbreak was in 2009-2010. That’s why I am mesmerized at the period of time it took him to reach and actually make a significant impact in the Premier League. Mexican players like Chicharito remind me that nothing is impossible regarding whatever race, color, financial situation you encounter yourself in. I hope he one day becomes the top scorer in the Premier League, or in any other competition. He’s my favorite player! Viva el Chicharito!

    • El Tri 2014

      March 16, 2011 at 5:01 pm

      Ditto. Been watching more Man Utd. games than my beloved Chivas. Pretty much hooked into PL this year.

      Agree also with comments about Aguirre’s coaching during the 2010 World Cup. But then that has always been a problem with the national Mexican team – it’s always someone’s best friend that gets to play rather than the best team.

      • Ricky

        March 17, 2011 at 1:53 pm

        Even an America fan like me can appreciate this kids work ethic, talent and humility.

    • JPadilla

      March 18, 2011 at 2:25 am

      LI am with you all the way. I was following Chicharito since he was with Chivas. He has raw talent. I see soccer in another level and understand it in another level. You can see Chicharito’s passion in his eyes. Everyone likes him now. But I liked him then when he wore 14 for Chivas and was playing second fiddle to Bravo n Bofo. I hate Messi, going into the world cup I made a bet that Chicharito would score more goals than Messi. And guess what, he did. This should shut all the bandwagon fans. Go follow Messi the FIFA player of the year and not my favorite player.

      • Leslie

        March 18, 2011 at 1:27 pm

        I know I LOVED him since he played with las Chivas… and you are completely right about the Bandwagon fans, it bothers me to see people saying “OMG he is the best player ever” but they just say that because he is at the top of his career right now, How come they didn’t like him when he was beggining his career??? … And about MESSI, i completely dislike him he isn’t as great as everybody thinks….
        I just hope that Chicharito stays humble and dosn’t turn into a stuck up…. 🙂

        • Aaron

          March 18, 2011 at 10:09 pm

          Ridiculous comments.

          Based on this logic every football fan in the world is a bandwagon fan. I guess ya’ll had the clairvoyance to follow all your favorite players when they were in their various youth academies across the globe so that you could one day call yourself a true fan of each. Most of us don’t have the time or inclination to scout the Mexican League, Ivorian academies, or South Korean reserve league on the off chance there is a gem there waiting to be swept up by the team we support, all so that we can be a “true” fan of said player.

          Ya’ll were a fan of Chicharito first, congratulations, get over yourselves.

  12. ThompsonLives

    March 16, 2011 at 10:34 am

    Enjoy Chicharito while he lasts. Eventually, SAF will ruin him by turning him into a diving, ref-baiting prima donna, like the rest of those United wankers.

    • KingofFootball

      March 16, 2011 at 11:44 am

      U are a real thug….what a moaner….

    • Troy

      March 17, 2011 at 4:00 am

      Man, those United supporters that pissed in your cherrios when you were a tyke really did some long-term damage. You are easily one of the most idiotic and abhorrently negative people on this site.

      • Devils Advocate

        March 17, 2011 at 6:24 am

        Troy..Nicely put. Some people seem to come here as attention seekers. I hear what this individual is saying but in truth, it’s hardly worth anyone’s time and only an ignoramus would believe it. Imagine what a great life this person must have.

  13. Jared

    March 16, 2011 at 10:23 am

    As a fan of the USMNT, I’m scared of what he will do to the US this summer in the Gold Cup. I can’t see Onyewu, Demerit or any of the other incredibly slow and incredibly average defenders being able to keep up with Chicharito’s runs. He’s so dangerous off the ball with the way he makes runs to spaces that put him in a position to receive a pass and score.

    As a fan of the game, it’s tough not to enjoy the way he plays. He seems to be having fun as well which is a lot better than people like Nani and Rooney who seem to do nothing but moan to the ref.

  14. Devils Advocate

    March 16, 2011 at 10:17 am

    To echo earlier comments, it’s really refreshing to observe what I regard as “old fashioned” values of hard work, resilience and skill in equal measure with this sensational player. Not for him the squabbling, petulant “prima donna” antics of certain team contemporaries. He just works and works and works. A smiling assassin!

    He reminds me of the early Michael Owen in terms of intelligence, speed and clinical finishing and Tevez in work rate and passion. A great piece of business from Sir Alex and an asset in all respects.

    • Gaz Hunt

      March 18, 2011 at 8:20 am

      I agree that he reminds me of a young Michael Owen but I think for his ability to ride the off-side line. He has such a great ability to run in behind defenders by timing his run perfectly. He’s had some spectacular finishes but he’s had many that have been taps in – this isn’t to take away from him at all. It just shows how much work was put in to get in those positions.

  15. El Tri 2014

    March 16, 2011 at 10:05 am

    Watching the CL game last night, I kept telling the OM backline (thru the TV of course) that he was moving to the near post again! Someone stop him! But alas the chap is too quick.

    I also notice how happy Rooney is sitting a little deeper, almost playing a Scholes’ role linking up with Hernandez. What a great game Rooney had and was all smiles with SAF.

  16. bersai

    March 16, 2011 at 9:41 am

    chicarito is the best and will continue to tbe the best. 2011 is his year gold cup and copa america you got to see him play this year it will be the best8===D

  17. BBC

    March 16, 2011 at 9:36 am

    Does anyone know the reason that we never saw him play for Mexico in the World Cup qualifying? He’s fascinating to watch

    • Saulo

      March 16, 2011 at 10:40 am

      Yes, the reason was that Aguirre, like many of our Mexican managers, preferred to play with player he had history with (old guys). We played the entire world cup without three out our best players: chicha, guardado and memo ochoa (goalkeeper). Imagine the outrage in Mexico!!! Aguirre is still pretty hated by most fans.

      • trickybrkn

        March 16, 2011 at 11:58 am

        I still don’t understand how Blanco saw a second of the pitch in WC 2010/

        • Guy

          March 16, 2011 at 12:48 pm

          It would seem that Mexico, along with unnamed others, is part of the, “If they’ve been capped before they should be capped again,” school of thought. To hell with form or actually thinking about which 11 players might work together best. I mean, who would want that?! 🙂

        • Red20

          March 16, 2011 at 2:02 pm

          I think Blanco was on the pitch grazing so they just figured it’d be easier to put him in the lineup than try to move him.

          • nik

            March 16, 2011 at 4:04 pm

            To be absolutely fair, in the game against France, there was no one other than Blanco that I wanted taking that penalty shot.
            And against Uruguay, Blanco had some great crosses that Guille Franco SHOULD have put in.

      • Alfonso

        March 17, 2011 at 12:34 am

        I agree with you in regards to Chicharito, Guardado & El Burro de Aguirre;but Ochoa was not up to the standards.

  18. Doc Häagen-Dazs

    March 16, 2011 at 9:21 am

    Will he ever be benched in favor of Berbatov for the remainder of the season? I doubt it.

    • Dave C

      March 16, 2011 at 2:50 pm

      I bet he will be, at least for some games. Fergie is lucky in that he has three strikers who are all in good form, and all bring something different to the team. From that, he can pick any two out of three.

  19. farlieonfootie

    March 16, 2011 at 8:48 am

    For all of Sir Alex’s talk of there being “no value in the market for transfers,” it really does make you wonder sometimes — Chicharito is probably one of the top signings (if not the top) of the EPL season,and he came at a significantly lower valuation than other players (i.e., Torres, Carroll, and the list goes on and on and on). He’s playing so well that he’s shunted Berbatov (the league’s top scorer to this point in the season, in case anyone forgot) to the bench, and he’s a joy to watch (especially if you like United — he’s just so damned happy every time he scores). He’s been United’s secret weapon this season, and I’ve been telling anyone and everyone who would listen since as far back as last August that this kid is something special. He scored in virtually every pre-season game — I know, I know, it was pre-season — but the way that he did it made this viewer sit up and take notice. I hadn’t been this excited about a player since the first time I laid eyes on Cristiano Ronaldo. Totally different player, obviously — Chicharito is much more like Ole Gunnar Solsksjaer — but the impact has been similar. Viva Chicharito!

    • Anthony

      March 16, 2011 at 10:07 am

      You didn’t even know who this kid was in august. “i knew he was something special” you were just like every other united fan “who is he, who did sir alex sign” “I’ve never heard of him” get the hell out of here. I find it funny that now people are saying “i knew he was going to be great” when they had never seen him play before signing for united

      • Guy

        March 16, 2011 at 10:26 am

        I don’t think “farlie” said anything about knowing Chicharito was going to be great beforehand. He specifically said that Chicharito caught his eye during pre-season and that he seemed special even then. Seems a fair enough observation.

      • farlieonfootie

        March 16, 2011 at 12:18 pm

        Guy: Thanks for your accurate observation below. Greatly appreciated.

        Anthony: You’re partly right, but only because I said August — and I meant to say JULY 2010. I hate to call you out, as I dislike publicly embarassing people, but please go to my website (you can click on my name above and it will take you there) and read the article dated September 29, 2010 Entitled “While Visions of Sweet Peas Danced In Their Heads,” and then report back to the board here what the first sentence says. I’ll wait.

        In case you don’t have the time (or inclination) to do that, allow me please to quote directly from the first paragraph of that article: “Chicharito!!! Tonight was the night I knew would happen several months ago; I just thought it would happen sooner. As close friends — and anyone else I’ve spoken with since July — know, ever since I first saw him break onto the scene at the World Cup I’ve been predicting that young Javier Hernandez, United’s Little Sweet Pea, would be an immediate sensation in his first year in England.”

        I’ve also written on him on roughly 11 other occasions throughout the season. Maybe it’s time to acknowledge that some people did indeed see something special inthe Little Pea back before he became an international sensation.

        • Aaron

          March 16, 2011 at 1:17 pm


      • Dave C

        March 16, 2011 at 2:45 pm

        You didn’t even know who this kid was in august.

        He played in the World Cup in July, and I believe he was officially signed by Man Utd prior to that. So there’s a good chance that if you’re a Man Utd fan, you might have looked out for his performances in the WC to find out about him. At the very least, you would be aware of who he was.

    • Aaron

      March 16, 2011 at 1:16 pm

      Maybe YOU didn’t know who he was in August but the rest of us that new he had been signed by United watched him score in the World Cup and then watched him net half a dozen goals in pre-season. I didn’t know he would be great then but I certainly was excited by his play in the summer.

    • Allen

      March 17, 2011 at 1:23 am


      Rafael van der Vaart has been the EPL’s best signing. This coming from a loyal Chelsea Blue.

      • The Gaffer

        March 17, 2011 at 8:04 am

        He was out injured for a while, but when was the last time that VDV scored a goal?

        The Gaffer

  20. Guy

    March 16, 2011 at 8:39 am

    Well, I’ll say it again. He is one of my favorite players to watch. He works his butt off, with results, and his on field demeanor is a wonder to behold. I just can’t figure out SAF was able to snatch him from under everyone else’s noses and for a mere 8 mil at that. Amazing. The Little Pea is almost enough to make you a Man Utd fan all by himself. 😉

    • MJD

      March 16, 2011 at 11:35 am

      “The Little Pea is almost enough to make you a Man Utd fan all by himself.”

      Key word: almost

      • Liam

        March 17, 2011 at 12:26 pm

        …and a lobotomy is the other part that’s required.

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