Let’s talk about Lindelof

golden_blunder

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What we're taught in England is that defenders should be no nonsense, strong in the tackle, challenge headers like their lives depend on it, and just be good enough on the ball to get it to someone else who is better on the ball. Skills like passing, awareness and reading of the game are not focused on as much. Defenders who don't follow that model will always be underappreciated by fans but the league has gone beyond that now.
It has evolved but ball players like Laporte and stones are better because they also are good at the basics like heading. This is why I believe we can do better than lindelof.
 

James Peril

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I just don’t understand why we bought him.
Obviously we needed a top player to challenge the best teams, but out of all the players in the world we signed him. Doesn’t make any sense, it’s not like he was the Mbappe of young defenders. Bang average at best, if he played for Cardiff he wouldn’t even be their stand-out defender.

Young, Valencia, Lindelöf, Lingard, Mata, Lukaku... there’s a reason why we won’t win the league. The scary thing is that replacing them will take time, so we’re at best looking at 1-2 years before even starting to create a team
 

Litch

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I don't know how good he's really is or is it cause the rest are sooo bad but I pretty much feel the same about a number of players here. How would Pogs, Sanchez or Martial look in a City or Pool shirt? All I know, forget comparisons with other teams defenders especially City or Liverpool as they spend more time causing the opposition teams more problems than worrying too much about having to defend Under pressure. When you are 2, 3 or 4 goals up, defending becomes very easy. Also has said, look at the players in front of their defenders.....
 

Acquire Me

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I believe in him. People need to wait a bit before they give their verdict.
 

SwedishFish

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Playing for Sweden he hides behind Granqvist. Playing for utd he hides behind Smalling.
Yeah I guess that's why he got Swedish POTY ahead of Granqvist and hiding behind that calamity that is Smalling are you having a laugh?

He plays well for several games, gets nominated for player of the month, keeps on being solid at the back yet still gets shat on by the posters on here. The fact that people would get rid of arguably our best defensive player this season over any of our other CBs is just laughable.
 

villain

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Yeah I guess that's why he got Swedish POTY ahead of Granqvist and hiding behind that calamity that is Smalling are you having a laugh?

He plays well for several games, gets nominated for player of the month, keeps on being solid at the back yet still gets shat on by the posters on here. The fact that people would get rid of arguably our best defensive player this season over any of our other CBs is just laughable.
Username checks out.
 

DanNistelrooy

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I've been very critical of him and still have big doubts about whether he will make it but there are clear improvement signs and he looks a lot more confident than at the start of the season.

However... I do feel like whenever he is asked to do any kind of challenging defending of sort, be that a header or tracking someone, then he is still suspect (see Aguero, Ronaldo goals and Palace disallowed goal from the weekend / Townsend miss). Those who criticise Smalling (who obviously has big flaws in his game) are completely taking for granted the amount of aerial clearances he makes, near enough every game he is clearing corners/freekicks - Victor just won't ever have this to his game (see their disallowed goal) which I think you need in England.
 

Johan07

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I've been very critical of him and still have big doubts about whether he will make it but there are clear improvement signs and he looks a lot more confident than at the start of the season.

However... I do feel like whenever he is asked to do any kind of challenging defending of sort, be that a header or tracking someone, then he is still suspect (see Aguero, Ronaldo goals and Palace disallowed goal from the weekend / Townsend miss). Those who criticise Smalling (who obviously has big flaws in his game) are completely taking for granted the amount of aerial clearances he makes, near enough every game he is clearing corners/freekicks - Victor just won't ever have this to his game (see their disallowed goal) which I think you need in England.
It would be interesting to see how the Lindelöf/Smalling pairing if we tried to stay higher up the pitch and press the ball; thus limiting the time of us defending deep in our own half. I agree on that Victor will probably always have issues there, especially in the PL.
Smalling showed under LvG that he actually can function in such a role when paired with someone like Blind. On the other hand we might just have kept Daley around then since he is arguably better than Victor on the ball even.
 

simplyared

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Yeah I guess that's why he got Swedish POTY ahead of Granqvist and hiding behind that calamity that is Smalling are you having a laugh?

He plays well for several games, gets nominated for player of the month, keeps on being solid at the back yet still gets shat on by the posters on here. The fact that people would get rid of arguably our best defensive player this season over any of our other CBs is just laughable.
Obviously we have different opinions about how good Lundelöf is and how bad Smalling is. Best leave it at that!
 

Judas

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No idea what to make of him really. I'm struggling to judge a big portion of our squad too harshly under the current setup. That's not to say they'll all become world class once things change, but it can't help matters.

I do think he's got more potential of making it with us than Bailly, but thats not exactly a huge endorsement of faith.
 

Murray3007

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Yeah I guess that's why he got Swedish POTY ahead of Granqvist and hiding behind that calamity that is Smalling are you having a laugh?

He plays well for several games, gets nominated for player of the month, keeps on being solid at the back yet still gets shat on by the posters on here. The fact that people would get rid of arguably our best defensive player this season over any of our other CBs is just laughable.
being the best of a bad bunch don't make you great, that's the problem, how a CB cant head a ball is beyond me, not sure hes been that solid to be fair. considering much goals we have conceded this season.
 

Foxbatt

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We should not take the Smalling Lindelof partnership in isolation. The fact Matic has been terrible in front of them for so long has to be taken into consideration too. I also wonder if in training they practice defending as a team? Do they do man to man marking or zonal marking? It looks like sometimes it is man to man and sometimes zonal too.
 

SwedishFish

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Believe me, I was as critical as some of you lot still are after a few games last season. Of course, I want him to succeed but I won't let my national allegiance get in the way of hindering my favourite football team. You can dispute this all you like but people that know me in real life would all vouch for this. The fact that I'm Swedish means that I watched him up close to a further extent than most of you have. I see his qualities in the national side and how he's being utilized there in one of the most solid defences in International football and how he's bit by bit has started to bring that to United.

I still believe he needs a better defender next to him than Smalling, preferably someone with experience who he can learn from like he did from Luisao at Benfica and Granqvist in the national side.
 

villain

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Believe me, I was as critical as some of you lot still are after a few games last season. Of course, I want him to succeed but I won't let my national allegiance get in the way of hindering my favourite football team. You can dispute this all you like but people that know me in real life would all vouch for this. The fact that I'm Swedish means that I watched him up close to a further extent than most of you have. I see his qualities in the national side and how he's being utilized there in one of the most solid defences in International football and how he's bit by bit has started to bring that to United.

I still believe he needs a better defender next to him than Smalling, preferably someone with experience who he can learn from like he did from Luisao at Benfica and Granqvist in the national side.
The fact you called him arguably our best defensive player this season, while Smalling - who has had to literally hold his hand and cover his mistakes since he came here - is a calamity means that you're not being objective at all.

Lindelof has played some good games in the last 6 weeks or so, great performance against Juve and deserved to be nominated for PoTM, but at this point he gets praised for not playing badly.
However his games against Watford, Wolves & West Ham (Why do they all start with W?) stand out as being particularly poor recently - since then he has definitely kicked on and his form has improved in the last 4/5 games for sure. The problem is that his good games are just as common as his average/bad games, which highlights a consistency problem or suggests that he's simply an average player who has purple patches of good form, either way - it's not good enough.

16 months into his United career and he's hardly set the place alight, and we need to get to the point where we have so many defenders who need other defenders in order to excel.
At 24 he's hardly a youth player, he's an experienced international who needs to be able to step up to the level required consistently, regardless of who his partner is.
 
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The only way he performs slightly better than average is if he has a older,experienced CB alongside him to hold his hand throughout the course of the game.
What a signing.
 

OldPop

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After thirteen games played, VNL is the fourth or fifth highest ranked player on Redcafe, showing that he is not as bad as some consider. Would most people who rated him so high have seen that wrong? It's very hard to believe.

If we get more better players throughout the squad he will of course get hard to keep that position if he does not continue to develop as positively as he did in recent months. Let's hope for both parts. Personally, at the moment, I would prefer the management to focus on finding a striker who can make goals.
 

James Peril

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After thirteen games played, VNL is the fourth or fifth highest ranked player on Redcafe, showing that he is not as bad as some consider. Would most people who rated him so high have seen that wrong? It's very hard to believe.

If we get more better players throughout the squad he will of course get hard to keep that position if he does not continue to develop as positively as he did in recent months. Let's hope for both parts. Personally, at the moment, I would prefer the management to focus on finding a striker who can make goals.
That doesn’t really mean anything though, and it’s easier for a defender to get a decent grade after a game compared to an attacker. Bare in mind, we’ve kept two clean sheets all season and have let in more goals than City/Liverpool will do in 38. Our defensive unit has been horrible this year and he’s a big part of it. A very long way from being a proper United-defender.
 

Bola

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I've been very critical of him and still have big doubts about whether he will make it but there are clear improvement signs and he looks a lot more confident than at the start of the season.

However... I do feel like whenever he is asked to do any kind of challenging defending of sort, be that a header or tracking someone, then he is still suspect (see Aguero, Ronaldo goals and Palace disallowed goal from the weekend / Townsend miss). Those who criticise Smalling (who obviously has big flaws in his game) are completely taking for granted the amount of aerial clearances he makes, near enough every game he is clearing corners/freekicks - Victor just won't ever have this to his game (see their disallowed goal) which I think you need in England.
That is my worry as well. If he can't get the basics of the English game right, then his 'continental' skills as a ball playing defender won't come to the fore.

The other concern I have is his mentality, eaflier in his start to his United career, he seemed to be more confident on the ball (bringing it out, more positive passing), but that element of his appears to have significantly regressed as his confidence took a hit. Appreciate that the 'toxic' atmosphere of the dressing could be having an effect, but I have a serious doubt over whether his mental resiliance is high enough for our ambitions.

At the moment, I just can't see him of being the right quality for the club. He's put in some better games recently, but too many question marks persist. I'd give him to the end of the season to prove himself (unless we get a good unsolicited bid), if not then we should look to move him on.

Scary thing is, we have 5 x CBs who are all candidates for selling over the next 24months. The longest serving (Smalling), is still our best defender
 
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OldPop

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That doesn’t really mean anything though, and it’s easier for a defender to get a decent grade after a game compared to an attacker. Bare in mind, we’ve kept two clean sheets all season and have let in more goals than City/Liverpool will do in 38. Our defensive unit has been horrible this year and he’s a big part of it. A very long way from being a proper United-defender.
Well, I think, after all, that means something, otherwise ranking would be completely meaningless. DDG is highly rated and no one is questioning it.

Our attackers, and the midfielder, have also been bad this year and if many in the team are bad, it is usually harder to be defenders and VNL in particular, gets unnecessary much criticism.

So my point is that if the rest of the team worked better then VNL and the rest of the defense would automatically be better and less pushed to mistakes.
 

elmo

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After thirteen games played, VNL is the fourth or fifth highest ranked player on Redcafe, showing that he is not as bad as some consider. Would most people who rated him so high have seen that wrong? It's very hard to believe.

If we get more better players throughout the squad he will of course get hard to keep that position if he does not continue to develop as positively as he did in recent months. Let's hope for both parts. Personally, at the moment, I would prefer the management to focus on finding a striker who can make goals.
That says more about how underwhelming the rest of our squad has been .
 

Ekeke

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After thirteen games played, VNL is the fourth or fifth highest ranked player on Redcafe, showing that he is not as bad as some consider. Would most people who rated him so high have seen that wrong? It's very hard to believe.

If we get more better players throughout the squad he will of course get hard to keep that position if he does not continue to develop as positively as he did in recent months. Let's hope for both parts. Personally, at the moment, I would prefer the management to focus on finding a striker who can make goals.
He always seems to get an extra point or two for not being Smalling.
 

devilish

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Yeah I guess that's why he got Swedish POTY ahead of Granqvist and hiding behind that calamity that is Smalling are you having a laugh?

He plays well for several games, gets nominated for player of the month, keeps on being solid at the back yet still gets shat on by the posters on here. The fact that people would get rid of arguably our best defensive player this season over any of our other CBs is just laughable.
I am not a big fan of Hodor and I also think Lindelof criticism is a bit unfair. However, Smalling IS our best CB.
 

OldPop

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I am not a big fan of Hodor and I also think Lindelof criticism is a bit unfair. However, Smalling IS our best CB.
In the latest match, against Young Boys, he played very well and helped start the attack in a way that I really appreciated, the role that has been taken by VNL in previous matches. Smalling may have learned from him. ;)
 

Pexbo

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I thought he was very good today again.

One point I’d like to make about him though, is that as a centre back who is comfortable on the ball and confident with his distribution I think he’s going to benefit from the team having a more expansive game.

We were never going to see the best of him by sitting deep and compact with very little movement ahead of him. It might offer him a little more protection but the strengths of his game are amplified when he has space between him and the midfield and he has plenty of players making runs ahead of him.

I’m really hoping that with a bit more of an open game ahead of him and a bit more space to work in, he’s going to grow in stature and we will see more of the reason he was supposedly bought.
 

charlenefan

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Easily MOTM today and on a good goalscoring run now
 

JMack1234

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Oh that run and pass deserved a goal. I have faith he could be a real player for us.
 

tony54

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I still think that Blind is better than him and all our other CBs. One day I will get over it, but I'm still annoyed how we wasn't played more at CB and allowed to leave .[/QUOTE]
I used to like Blind as well, but hey ho, one can't be right all the time.
 

FujiVice

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I bet Blind would be getting games under Solskjaer if he was still here. He'd have the occassional nightmare, because he was excellent on the ball. Smalling really benefited from having a ball player alongside him.

Linelof was great today, though. And in fairness to him, he's been pretty good at points this year.
 

The Boy

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Thought this was worth a bump, Lindelof has looked excellent recently. He was one of the best on the pitch against Newcastle and is evolving into a top quality ball playing defender. Best of all he's only 24 so can only improve from here. I think he struggled with a constantly changing defence under Jose, though even then he looked good and much better than last season.

Just another reason for Utd fans to be cheerful.