Man United Defender Is Finally Proving Himself At Old Trafford

For much of his debut season at Manchester United, Swedish defender Victor Lindelof seemed like a deer caught in the headlights.

The centre-back looked too weak to handle the rigours of the Premier League and always seemed to have a mistake or two in him.

Former United gaffer Jose Mourinho would often change his central defence pairings and that lack of continuity certainly didn’t help the former Benfica man as he looked to settle in at Old Trafford.

At the start of this term it looked as the Swede was still a weak-link and nowhere near worth the €35m that The Red Devils had splashed out for him in 2017.

But as Man United become more confident and comfortable under caretaker boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Lindelof is also starting to look like a brighter prospect that might come good after all.

In fairness, even by the time of Ole’s arrival Victor seemed to have turned a corner. Even under Jose for the final month or so the centre-back was probably United’s best performing central defender at Old Trafford.

Lindelof has started seventeen league games this season, out of a possible twenty-two, including in all of the top flight games under fellow Scandinavian Solskjaer. I believe that this run of games has helped build up the twenty-four year old’s confidence and he’s starting to believe in himself again.

In United’s win over Tottenham Hotspur yesterday, United had a lot to thank their goalkeeper David de Gea for but Lindelof also impressed at the back. Fellow centre-back Phil Jones had a few nervy moments but that didn’t faze Victor.

The Man Utd defender has improved in the air and that was evident against Spurs, as no one won more headers than the Swede.

This season, Lindelof has been efficient with the ball at his feet recording a passing success rate of 87%.

He’s winning 1.8 aerial duels per game, making on average 1.4 successful tackles per league outing and around 1 interception too. His best defensive stat (via Whoscored) has been his clearances, which stand at 4 clearances per game!

His defensive stats (clearances/tackles/interceptions/aerials won) have all improved from last term and he’s already started more games during this campaign than he managed for the whole of last season.

A major boost is that the international defender isn’t making the same silly mistakes as he was and he’s certainly not making the same amount of errors either. He’s matured and his positional sense has been much better too.

His recent performances haven’t gone unnoticed with the Red Devils supporters either:

Interim manager Solskjaer stated in the Mirror recently that he was a fan of Victor’s and that the defender knew how to play out from the back:

“He’s a cultured, European centre back who gets on the ball, passes it really well, knows when to quicken things up.

“It is different to play in England and you have time to adapt.”

Do Man United still need a top drawer centre-half? Yes definitely.

But the emergence of a stronger, brighter Victor Lindelof means that Manchester United might now have an automatic starter to star alongside that potential new recruit!

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