Javier Hernandez’s Real Madrid dream has only just begun

ESPN FC’s Gabriele Marcotti explains why Javier Hernandez will join Real Madrid from Man United on a season-long loan.

Now that his medical is complete and Mexico’s Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez has officially joined Real Madrid on loan from Manchester United, it’s time to analyze the move.

For United, the loss of Hernandez is negligible. In 24 league games this past season, he tallied only four times. The club has other strikers who are more effective, namely Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie and Falcao. Hernandez was surplus to the requirements of new coach Louis van Gaal.

Although the good-hearted young striker was known for his work ethic and a few timely goals, he wasn’t used often. When Hernandez did play, his rusty form in front of goal hindered his effectiveness. It almost seemed as if the harder he tried, the more he tightened up and limited his natural poaching talent.

Not surprisingly, the lack of form carried over to his national team play. After a long scoring drought during the final qualifying games before Brazil, Hernandez did not start games for El Tri in the 2014 World Cup and contributed only one goal. This was clearly a regression from the 2010 tournament, in which he started one game and scored two goals throughout Mexico’s run.