Van Gaal Should End Hummels Pursuit


LVG should abandon his pursuit for Mat Hummels the Borussia Dortmund captain. Hummels has been a leader of a very poorly performing Borussia defensive unit. Dortmund gave away very sloppy goals during their recent Champions League clash with Juventus in Turin. Carlos Tevez was given the freedom and space to tap in for the Old Lady’s first. This has really been indicative of their performances in the Bundesliga this season. Too frequently teams, of all stations – top and lower half of the league, find it easy to play through the defense with Hummels at the center. Hummels is not the strong-man type defender with ferocious tackling and aggressive leadership. He is more of a defender who reads the game in front him to make timely interceptions, and is comfortable bringing the ball out of the back. He also is very useful from set pieces as he attacks aerial balls with some expertise.

United actually already have three, or maybe four defenders in that same type of mould – Smalling, Evans, McNair, and Blackett. United already have a modern all-around defender in Rojo, who can be aggressive when the occasion calls for it, and can play in multiple positions across the back four. Rojo just lacks the leadership and organization skills. However, that is fine because he is not that type of player as of yet. The other United defenders are not as polished or accomplished as Hummels, but they have similar type approaches to the game.

What United needs is another hard as nails, tough tackling destroyer who has more football intelligence than the injury ridden Jones, or has more leadership skills than Rojo (who has impressed). The Reds need a world class, or a first team reliable central defender who can lead the line in front of the superb David De Gea. Capturing Hummels will just be getting another ‘big name’ to shoehorn into the squad, which has been a disturbing trend that started with the purchase of Berbatov (see RVP, Mata, Di Maria, and Falcao). The main problem is getting back into Europe to attract elite talent, or emerging talents.

TOP-BOTTOM: Defence Score/Total Forward Pass/Successful Passes/Tackles Won/Interceptions


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