Juan Cuadrado to Manchester United: Player profile - who is the Colombian winger?

The Fiorentina man is a speed demon on the right wing

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The Independent Football

Juan Cuadrado may have been a relative unknown coming into the World Cup, but alongside Colombia's star James Rodriguez he became one of the players of the tournament.

Those who have followed Serie A in the last couple of seasons will know Cuadrado well, with his exciting performances on Fiorentina's right wing often lighting up the La Viola.

Something of a late bloomer, Cuadrado has only really come to the fore in the last two seasons.

In three years at Udinese he played just 24 matches, and was sent out on loan in 2011 to Lecce, who were eventually relegated to Serie B, where he was decent without being great, scoring three goals.

Still, his performances convinced Fiorentina to take part of his rights from Udinese and he became an integral part of a side that finished 4th, scoring five goals and six assists.

Last season he took his game to another level, scoring 11 goals and adding five assists in Serie A, with 15 goals overall as Fiorentina again finished fourth and reached the final of the Coppa Italia - though they eventually lost to Napoli.

Cuadrado showed his versatility playing in a variety of positions, on the left and right wings, as a wing back and even as a right back and centre forward.

He combined brilliantly with Giuseppe Rossi, who scored 16 goals in just 21 matches, and Cuadrado's form continued into the tournament in Brazil.

Playing exclusively on the right for Jose Pekerman's team, Cuadrado made four assists in his five games in the tournament, the joint highest with German midfielder Toni Kroos, who played twice more.

Cuadrado is a late bloomer but has been excellent for Fiorentina in the last two seasons

He was a constant threat on the right hand side, beating his opponent with either lightning speed or a deft touch, before supplying crosses with real quality.

His game is pretty simple, but hugely effective. His low centre of gravity and quick pace allows him to beat a defender and the likes of Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie will be relishing getting on the end of some excellent crosses.

Last season he was most effective when starting on the left and cutting inside - he has a decent shot from distance and six of his goals came from the left.

The 26-year-old can play in a variety of positions and could excel in a wing back role

He is actually a better defender than you would expect and should Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal adopt the 3-5-2 that was so effective for the Netherlands during the World Cup, Cuadrado would be perfect as a wing back.

The 26-year-old can sometimes be a bit weak in possession and likes to hold onto the ball a bit too long, but he should be perfectly adapted to playing in the Premier League.