Centre Back... Who do we go for?

Macern

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It seems that most agree with the need for a proper center back to partner Bailly in the future. With Lindelöf still being young and not quite ready yet, Smalling/Jones just not good enough and Rojo too inconsistent, it wouldn’t be a big surprise if United spend a decent amount to bring in a new center back in the summer.

Who do we go for?

Some candidates:
David Luiz
Sokratis Papastathopoulos
Kamil Glik
Kostas Manolas
Kalidou Koulibaly
Samuel Umtiti
Ezequiel Garay
José Giménez
Mateo Musacchio
Ömer Toprak
Stefan De Vrij
Jonathan Tah
Eric Dier
Daniele Rugani
Matthijs De Ligt
Lucas Hernández
Alessio Romagnoli
Harry Maguire
Milan Škriniar


I don’t watch that much football outside the Premier League, but from what I know, my personal preference would be Manolas or Koulibaly (if top tier players like Boateng aren’t available)

@Damien or any other modmin, a poll with some of the main candidates would be greatly appreciated.
 
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DomesticTadpole

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It seems that most agree with the need for a proper center back to partner Bailly in the future. With Lindelöf still being young and not quite ready yet, and Smalling/Jones just not good enough, it wouldn’t be a big surprise if United spend a decent amount to bring in a new center back in the summer.

Who do we go for?

Some candidates:
David Luiz
Sokratis Papastathopoulos
Kamil Glik
Kostas Manolas
Kalidou Koulibaly
Samuel Umtiti
Ezequiel Garay
José Giménez
Mateo Musacchio
Ömer Toprak
Stefan De Vrij
Jonathan Tah
Eric Dier

Inigo Martinez
Daniele Rugani
Matthijs De Ligt
Lucas Hernández
Alessio Romagnoli


I don’t watch that much football outside the Premier League, but from what I know, my personal preference would be Manolas or Koulibaly (if top tier players like Boateng aren’t available)

@Damien a poll with some of the main candidates would be greatly appreciated.
Inigo Martinez has just signed for Bilbao this week.
 

Macern

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I think natural fitness and injury proneness would be two very important factors to consider. Ideally we’d want someone who could play week in week out alongside Bailly and form a proper partnership. Rotating central defenders doesn’t seem like a very good idea to me.
Inigo Martinez has just signed for Bilbao this week.
I’ll edit him out
 

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Lindelöf needs chucked in the team for a lengthy run of games. I’ve been quietly impressed by him, and think he’ll develop into a top drawer ball playing CB.
 

IAmAWinner

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I'm happy with Jones. Need the Jones-Bailly partnership back again.
18 goals conceded in 25 games, I don't think Mourinho will buy a centre back.
 

DomesticTadpole

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Lindelöf needs chucked in the team for a lengthy run of games. I’ve been quietly impressed by him, and think he’ll develop into a top drawer ball playing CB.
He seemed to be settling in then he took him out of the team. Not sure it did him any good.
 

Macern

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I'm happy with Jones. Need the Jones-Bailly partnership back again.
18 goals conceded in 25 games, I don't think Mourinho will buy a centre back.
I’m not happy with him. His weaknesses are exposed too often against decent opposition, and you can’t rely on him because he’s guaranteed to pick up injuries every now and then. There is a lack of consistency in the back four with him in the equation, and I think Mourinho should do something about that.
 

Yagami

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Koulibaly would be perfect. Very good defensively and on the ball. I'd have said Sokratis a couple of years ago but I don't think he's good enough anymore.
 

Jaap

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Was Rojo injured on Wednesday? I'd have him over Smalling, paired with Jones, any day of the week.
Rojo, at least, can bring the ball out of the back. Smalling can't even play a diagonal ball.
 

Macern

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Harry Maguire.
Good shout, I’ll add him to the list.
He seemed to be settling in then he took him out of the team. Not sure it did him any good.
Yeah he seemed to pick up some form. I don’t think he’s any worse than Smalling/Jones, though I don’t watch him in training every day. Ideally he should be someone to benefit from in big games when pressure is high, as he’s a lot better than Jones and Smalling when put under pressure.
 

Samid

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Maguire for me too. A tank that is incredible on the ball. Offer them Smalling + £10m.
 

Macern

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Signing yet another CB is extremely unlikely.
We would have to sell someone, yeah, but I think it’s one of the areas in the squad that has a clear room for improvement. Having a defined and consistent center back partnership is underrated imo. Also I think one of the reasons why we don’t perform against the top teams in the league is that the service on the ball from our center backs has been atrocious. They don’t contribute much in the build-up phase and they aren’t comfortable at playing out from the back to maintain possession.
 

DomesticTadpole

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We would have to sell someone, yeah, but I think it’s one of the areas in the squad that has a clear room for improvement. Having a defined and consistent center back partnership is underrated imo.
That is exactly the problem we have had. Everytime we seem to have a partnership going one gets injured. Jones, inevitably, Bailly and Rojo have all had long spells out injured.
You wonder what they would want for Maguire after they have dug their heels in with Mahrez?
 

Zoo

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Gimenez.

One of Smalling or Jones can go, IMO the latter.
 

sun_tzu

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Gimenez and romagnoli would be my picks
about to go into the last year of his contract isnt he? - so might actually not be a crazy price?

That said we have a pretty good central defense so I dont see it as a priority

But if we did buy somebody then surely we have to sell a couple of players as well as
Bailly
Jones
Smalling
Lindeloff
Rojo
Tuanzebe
Blind
TFM

Is far too much cover if be buy somebody else
 
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M Bison

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I really hope we dont sign another center back. We were poor at the back against Spurs but i think we've looked ok this season, signing yet another defender is a waste of resources which could be utilised better elsewhere
 

Macern

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That is exactly the problem we have had. Everytime we seem to have a partnership going one gets injured. Jones, inevitably, Bailly and Rojo have all had long spells out injured.
You wonder what they would want for Maguire after they have dug their heels in with Mahrez?
50-70 million? I honestly wouldn’t complain if we paid somewhere arond that. He’s PL proven, young, established, complete, consistent, not injury prone, etc etc. The fact that he’d instantly improve the level of build up from the back is another reason to sign him. He’d be great for games where we are put under pressure because he’s so good on the ball. Not to mention how well he compliments Bailly. Bailly isn’t the strongest in the air, but Maguire is. Maguire isn’t the quickest, but Bailly is. Them two together could grow into the best CB partnership in the league.
 

Dan_F

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Was Rojo injured on Wednesday? I'd have him over Smalling, paired with Jones, any day of the week.
Rojo, at least, can bring the ball out of the back. Smalling can't even play a diagonal ball.
I’m not sure if it’s due to instructions or not, but Rojo’s literally just been smashing the ball up to Lukaku all season. I’m not sure why because he can obviously bring the ball out better than most of our centre backs.
 

YouOnlyLiveTwice

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Someone who plays LCB regularly, i think that is the most important thing when looking at potential candidates. Koulibaly and Maguire are good shouts.

Even though i would like a new CB, it isn't anywhere near top priority.
 

DomesticTadpole

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about to go into the last year of his contract isnt he? - so might actually not be a crazy price?

That said we have a pretty good central defense so I dont see it as a priority

But if we did buy somebody then surely we have to sell a couple of players as well as
Bailly
Jones
Smalling
Lindeloff
Rojo
Tuanzebe
Blind
TFM

Is far too much cover if be buy somebody else
Think Blind is a goner. He was quite happy to go in this window. If Jones or Smalling make any more errors then he might jetison one of them as well. It depends if he really wants to get the two kids into the squad or feels they still need more time on loan. It depends what Tuanzebe and TFM think is beneficial to them as well. Sit on their backside most of the time or actually play somewhere and learn from their mistakes.
 

panz

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Great shout! I hear a lot of good things about him. Is he ready though? Will he go right into the team and raise the level? How is he on the ball?
His performances with Inter this year have been great, brilliant on the ball- I've seen him confident enough to make runs in midfield with it. Can score goals (3 so far in all comps. in comparison our current CBs have 2 between them this season).

His success rate this season is 91.6%, passing being one of his best attributes, can throw long-balls on the wings as well as direct down the middle towards the #9.

Edit: Two days ago his agent spoke to a Slovakian website and when asked about interest from Man Utd, Barcelona, Man City and Real Madrid he said that Inter turned down an offer between £52.5m to £57m from one of those clubs without specifying.

From what I've seen this season I think he's ready to step up, especially if he carries on like this until the end. If it wasn't for Handanovic and Skriniar so many Inter draws would have turned in losses.
 
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ayushreddevil9

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about to go into the last year of his contract isnt he? - so might actually not be a crazy price?

That said we have a pretty good central defense so I dont see it as a priority

But if we did buy somebody then surely we have to sell a couple of players as well as
Bailly
Jones
Smalling
Lindeloff
Rojo
Tuanzebe
Blind
TFM

Is far too much cover if be buy somebody else
That's an average cover. Rojo and blind should be leaving. Lindelof hasn't proved anything yet.
 

Klean

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Just play Lindeloff between now and the rest of the year. He offers us something different out of the back with his passing that none of our other center backs can do as well. Plus he needs a consistent run of games so we can honestly see if he will make the grade or not. I think personally he has performed well enough over his last few starts to justify given a solid run out.
 

suhaylah

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Smalling, Lindelof and Blind should be sold. Buy a class left CB and play Tuanzebe as CB next season in cup games.
 

DomesticTadpole

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Smalling, Lindelof and Blind should be sold. Buy a class left CB and play Tuanzebe as CB next season in cup games.
Think Lindelof should have more chance than he has been given so far. Think Blind and Darmian will be gone. Both of whom can be CB's and fullbacks.
 

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McGuire. I'd also keep Blind if we go 3 at the back more regularly. He is very good as the LCB in a back 3.
 

sincher

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Don't think we need one. There are many more pressing issues.
 

suhaylah

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Think Lindelof should have more chance than he has been given so far. Think Blind and Darmian will be gone. Both of whom can be CB's and fullbacks.
Tbh, i personnally don't think Lindelof is suited to the premier league. He's not physical enough. I'd sell him but i'd expect Darmian and Blind or even Smalling to go before him.