Manchester United: A Rational Approach to Solving our Defensive Problem.

in Sports Talk Sociallast month

The season is fast coming to a close and we are equally drawing closer to the summer transfer window and the rumours are already flying. Manchester United have been linked with various defensive prospects, most of whom I haven't seen with much regularity.

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Pau Torres, Jules Kounde, Raphael Varane, Sergio Ramos, Koulibaly and Ben White have all been linked with a move to the club.

Of those listed, Ramos and Koulibaly are probably at the bottom of that list based on the characteristics of the players Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been going after emphasis being on 'young'.

That leaves Pau Torres (24), Jules Kounde (22), Raphael Varane (27), and Ben White (23).

Three of these candidates have one thing in common. The right foot is predominant, therefore leaving Pau Torres who is the only left-footer.

Keep that in mind while we cover this next important bit.

Maguire v Lideloff | Who gets axed!

This is where most Man United fans will deviate in their opinion.

One school of thought reckons that Maguire is a slow, calamitous defender with a turning radius of an 18-wheeler truck. That is partially true.

Others consider Lindeloff the worst of the pair and should be replaced with either Bailly or Tuanzebe.

I personally consider Lindeloff to be the weak link in the defense. While he is the better ball-playing defender, he doesn't fulfill the basics of being a defender. He is weak in aerial challenges, slow to track back and unfortunately he is always experiencing back spasms that keep him out.

Logically, the man to keep in the starting 11 is Man United captain Harry Maguire. Despite his obvious deficiencies he is the fittest defender at the club and the fittest player overall.

Fans have also been questioning why Eric Bailly has not started more often in games and the answer to that question is considerably easier. You just have to shift your eyes over to Anfield and see the consequences of shifting your centre-back pairing. Eric Bailly couldn't play more than three games in a row and stay fit. The manager would be forced to keep chopping and changing between him and Lindeloff.

So with Maguire being right-footed, the only other logical option is to go after a left-footed defender to compliment the defensive line.

Solskjaer has been quoted severally expressing his need to have a left-footed defender. The Nathan Aké debacle comes to mind.

That means Pau Torres could possibly be the main transfer target. That would probably end Bailly's stint at Manchester United because of his injury record and cement Lindeloff's position as third choice.

That would give United quality depth at centre-back which would help the club keep more clean sheets and be physically imposing when defending corners which we have been conceding with unfortunate regularity.



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