Saturday, August 20, 2022

Manchester United Eyeing This Resolute Defender: A Calculated Risk?

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Prasoon Sur
Prasoon is a law student who lives in the North East of India. Wildly innovative, football is more than a passion for him.

Amidst the reports that have been surfacing on the internet and major dailies lately, one of the eye-catchy observations that must interest the Manchester United fans is their club getting linked with the Swedish centre-back Victor Lindelöf. Plying his trade in the Primeira Liga and gathering widespread recognition, it was about time for a blockbuster club like Manchester United to knock his door.

Owing to the injuries to his central defenders in the shape Chris Smalling and Eric Bailly, José Mourinho is believed to have been assessing his options for making the necessary ramifications to his side in the January transfer window and Lindelöf appears to be the one the Portuguese is contemplating to see getting unveiled at the Old Trafford.

The 22-year-old Benfica defender has many attributes of a modern day defender He is tall, well-built and has the element of pace in him that makes him stand out. With 10 caps for his country already at a tender age, the Swedish international is versatile enough to be deployed at the right-back slot as well which is something that is likely to come handy for Manchester United.

Strong in the air, the 6 ft. 2 in. defender makes well-timed tackles, doesn’t commit fouls too often and has nerves of steel to keep the opponents’ attack in check. Moreover, Lindelöf is a disciplined defender, is serene, focused and marks the attackers in an impeccable manner and the way he settled at the Benfica senior side after getting promoted from Benfica B side is intriguing.

The Red Devils haven’t had a prolific start to their campaign which they must have dreamt of under the tutelage of Mourinho, as they find themselves in the sixth spot in the league table and already eight points behind league leaders Liverpool. Pressure is, undoubtedly, mounting on the former Chelsea boss and fingers are being pointed on his tactical nous and abilities to get right men to get the job done.

With every signing, the inherent limitations of the risk involved are inseparable, but in the shape of Lindelöf, the twenty times league winners can bank upon (well, let’s say he is a risk worth taking). In 9 league appearances so far this season, the young defender has accumulated 5 tackles with a success rate of 56%, has made 15 interceptions, 33 clearances and 3 blocks and mind you, he is yet to see a card which goes on to tell why he is valued so highly in the sea of youngsters in the football fraternity.

Manchester United are helplessly vouching for an exit route from the doldrums they find themselves at the moment and Lindelöf seems to be a prospective avenue for solace for Mourinho, at least defensively. The young defender with notable Champions League experience fits the bill and at the onset, he does resemble a solid defender who can carry the expectations of the fans on his shoulders and deliver.

Statistics Credits: Squawka.

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