By Mark Weasley
Manchester United have been linked to Victor Lindelof since the beginning of the year, and the Red Devils duly got their man in this summer’s transfer window. The 22 year old Swede is one of the most promising centre backs in the whole of Europe and was signed by Jose Mourinho as the long term partner for classy Ivorian centre back, Eric Bailly.
The Ivorian impressed after joining the Old Trafford outfit last summer, but Mourinho identified the need to have a stable partner for him, after pairing him with the likes of Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, Daley Blind and Marcos Rojo. Lindelof was supposedly the answer but his start at Old Trafford has been nothing short of shocking.
The preseason match against LA Galaxy was a sign of things to come as he showed a lack of composure needed at this level and against Real Madrid also in pre-season, conceded a shocking penalty that allowed the European champions equalise through Casemiro. The centre-back has not featured in the Premier League so far, and Jose has called for the need for the former Benfica man to adapt to the physicality and intensity of the English game, a fact that has confused United fans as to why he was signed in the first place. He has not featured in any matchday squad and many are afraid for the future of the player.
He last played in the European Super Cup in Skopje, and alongside Smalling, looked out of depths and hasn’t been seen in a United shirt ever since. He is the club’s most expensive defender of all time, and is running out of time to convince Jose of his ability as Jones and Bailly have struck very good partnership which has seen the side fail to concede a goal in 270 minutes of Premier League football.
The same scenario happened with Henrikh Mkhitaryan last summer, who took time to adapt to Jose’s methods and is now one of the first names on the teamsheet. Jose is a manager who wants 100% commitment and demands his players play a certain way.
United are looking good and ready to win the title as we have won three matches out of three and the squad depth is perhaps the best in the whole country.
Lindelof is still young and will come good only once he motivates himself to take up the challenge of playing for the biggest club in England. His manager would only allow the best players to put on the jersey. We expect more from him and it’s time he starts paying a chunk of his transfer fee. We won’t expect anything short of that.