Potential Centre-Back Signings

Adnan

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If you want to play through the thirds and attempt to dominate the game by playing in a higher defensive line by committing a high volume of players in attack then your rest defence has to be strong both technically in possession and physically, athletically out of possession where you will have the correct CB profiles who are suited to subdue the opponent's fast transitions. So we need a CB who is strong at winning duels and is quick and athletic to thwart quick attackers in open space.

There's a number of players who potentially fit the above criteria and it's that criteria we need to persevere with. And that goes for every position in the team, with some positions requiring different things.

Todibo would be a good start but that should just be the start of another two CBs to follow him in the next 18 months. It might be a little difficult under the Glazer ownership but it shouldn't be too big of a problem under a new owner imo.


 

Primex

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If you want to play through the thirds and attempt to dominate the game by playing in a higher defensive line by committing a high volume of players in attack then your rest defence has to be strong both technically in possession and physically, athletically out of possession where you will have the correct CB profiles who are suited to subdue the opponent's fast transitions. So we need a CB who is strong at winning duels and is quick and athletic to thwart quick attackers in open space.

There's a number of players who potentially fit the above criteria and it's that criteria we need to persevere with. And that goes for every position in the team, with some positions requiring different things.

Todibo would be a good start but that should just be the start of another two CBs to follow him in the next 18 months. It might be a little difficult under the Glazer ownership but it shouldn't be too big of a problem under a new owner imo.
Exactly this,we need CB who are elite in possession but also physical beast, people who are good at defending the channels and and good one on one,this has been a big area of weakness for us. For so long we had defenders who shin away from tackles and excorted opposition to our own box. Reason I envied barca with Araujo, Liverpool with konate. In the end I think signing players with regards to playing style would be of upmost importance so my pick would be diomande and todibo. While letting go of maguire, lindelof, varane and malacia for some profit, if we have any ambition as a club.
 

Rampant Red Rodriguez

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What's his pace like?. We already have a good passing cb in Maguire but he gets caught out of position with his dead pace.

Also what style of football do his team play?. Be handy if he could adapt fully within 6 months.
 

aeh1991

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Replace Maguire with Todibo (shouldn't cost too much)
Swap Lindelof + money with Antonio Silva
If Varane wants to go, sell him to Saudi and replace him with G.Inacio or another LCB.
Then we have 4 top CBs, two at each side.
 

garelo

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79% aerial duel won, 66% all duels won in french league, is it right to say that i'm worried how he'd fare in more phsyical league like PL?
 

Lash

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79% aerial duel won, 66% all duels won in french league, is it right to say that i'm worried how he'd fare in more phsyical league like PL?
The prem is no more physical than the French league. Saliba, Fofana and others have been totally fine.
 

garelo

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The prem is no more physical than the French league. Saliba, Fofana and others have been totally fine.
Are you talking about the same Saliba who spent 2 years on loan before finally deemed ready for PL?
 

Kingslayer18

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Replace Maguire with Todibo (shouldn't cost too much)
Swap Lindelof + money with Antonio Silva
If Varane wants to go, sell him to Saudi and replace him with G.Inacio or another LCB.
Then we have 4 top CBs, two at each side.

Agree on the first part. That move can be done in Jan. Would rather target Diomande than Silva. Diomande is going to be a beast of a player and could end up world class in a few years. Don't know what our scouts are doing since there's been no hints we're in for him. It's only Arsenal's interest that have been highlighted.

With Diomande and Todibo, we've got younger, athletic profiles that are both fast enough to defend the channels but also have impressive progressive passing capabilities. I like the look of Tapsoba, or Jarrad Branthwaite from Everton as a LCB. Lukeba would be another good choice but he recently joined Leipzig. Hincapie from Leverkusen would also be a good option. I like G.Inacio as well but think he'll go to a club where he can be first choice.
 

Ubik

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Are you talking about the same Saliba who spent 2 years on loan before finally deemed ready for PL?
Tbf those 2 years on loan were also spent in the French league.
 

goalscholes

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Agree on the first part. That move can be done in Jan. Would rather target Diomande than Silva. Diomande is going to be a beast of a player and could end up world class in a few years. Don't know what our scouts are doing since there's been no hints we're in for him. It's only Arsenal's interest that have been highlighted.

With Diomande and Todibo, we've got younger, athletic profiles that are both fast enough to defend the channels but also have impressive progressive passing capabilities. I like the look of Tapsoba, or Jarrad Branthwaite from Everton as a LCB. Lukeba would be another good choice but he recently joined Leipzig. Hincapie from Leverkusen would also be a good option. I like G.Inacio as well but think he'll go to a club where he can be first choice.
If we had to prioritise one defender, I’d go for Diomande. Has everything.
 

Adnan

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Are you talking about the same Saliba who spent 2 years on loan before finally deemed ready for PL?
Saliba was 18 years old when Arsenal signed him and Arteta (joined Dec 2019) didn't feel he was ready to be a starter at 18 years of age, so was sent on loan. I personally thought it was a mistake to send him on loan because I felt at the time that Arteta could've developed him due to how poor Arsenal were at the time where they finished 8th, 8th, 5th before bringing him back and they finished 2nd.
 

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Saliba was 18 years old when Arsenal signed him and Arteta (joined Dec 2019) didn't feel he was ready to be a starter at 18 years of age, so was sent on loan. I personally thought it was a mistake to send him on loan because I felt at the time that Arteta could've developed him due to how poor Arsenal were at the time where they finished 8th, 8th, 5th before bringing him back and they finished 2nd.
I was actually desperate for us to take advantage when he hadn't signed his contract and didn't look like he was trusted by Arteta. I would have him as the best CB in the league, in my opinion.
 

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I really like what I've seen of Todibo. We should definitely get him in. I also like the look of Antonio Silva too, as well as Ousmane Diomande who seems particularly good in passing from the back.

Todibo seems to fit that profile of a player who is already very good but yet to take that next step to become a top, top player. Exactly the sort of profile we should be looking at. That 22-24 year old who is on the cusp of making the next big step up, and can become a star for us very quickly. There are high potential breakthrough players, then established quality players pre-prime, then quality players in their prime, and finally post or tail end prime quality players. We seem to sign a lot of players from the first or last category, whereas the core of our recruitment should come from the second category. Players ready to become a star, but will make that transition at United. Fergie always used to say that we make stars instead of signing them; and that was largely true.

Hojlund is the first player we've done that with in a while, although you could say Martinez fit the bill too - yet the defining marker of that signing was that the manager had worked with him before. Just this summer we've seen Lavia (55m), Mac Allister (35m), Szoboszlai (60m), Timber (34m), Moussa Diaby (42m), Verbruggen (15m), Nkunku (55m), Gravenberch (35m), Doku (56m), Matheus Nunes (53m), Tonali (55m), Kulusevski (26m), Johnson (48m), Ward-Prowse (30m), who all more or less fit that strategy - give or take the odd exception - and almost all of who would've improved us long term or been better than the older or more overpriced options we have gone for. Season before we had players like Bruno Guimaraes, who was eminently affordable, and would've fit us like a glove at a reasonable fee.

Most of those players are between 21 and 25, already proven at a high level, and just ripe to make the next step up to become great players. Doesn't mean that all will - of course not - but meanwhile we are signing a 33 year old Eriksen (albeit on a free) and a 30 year old Casemiro for 65m, or huge fees for players that fit the age profile but the price is simply too high for where they are in their career. See Sancho for 73M or Antony for 85m. For the price of those two we could have signed Bruno Guimaraes, Jurrien Timber, Jeremy Doku, and Dejan Kulusevski, and had a much, much better squad.

And that's just the most basic way of looking at it. Our recruitment is appalling. I don't know if we just don't trust our scouts, or don't do the scouting work, or if it's because there is no coherent voice at thew top in the form of a knowledgable DoF (the latter I assume), but the end result is that we buy players past their prime, or massively overpay for young but largely unproven talent that we haven't done enough homework on.

This isn't to scapegoat any players, but it's more to identify a pattern that is blatantly obvious. One of the main reasons I was behind the Mount signing is because it adds a quality player that can play several positions, giving us much needed depth, and he's only 24. Looking at the prices of the players I just mentioned, its the sort of price bracket that you can get very good quality for.
 
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The White Pele

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Is this going to be another case of a player of interest who was affordable that we’ve sat on and then commands an astronomical fee when we come back for him?
 

Redivy

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I really like Todibo as a player and I'd bring him in along with another centre back as we really should have 4 starting quality central defenders in the squad. However, a pairing of Martinez and Todibo would leave us light, and both would be better served next to a physically dominant centre back.

Martinez
Varane
Todibo
Silva

Would be a nice selection of players you can interchange depending on the opposition. Antonio Silva is the biggest talent out of the young defenders in Europe in my opinion, and based off the games I have seen him play.
 

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I’ll like us to go for Todibo and Silva to replace Maguire and Lindelof. It makes so much sense that probably our inept board will not do it.
 

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I really like Todibo as a player and I'd bring him in along with another centre back as we really should have 4 starting quality central defenders in the squad.
Same. I think we miss a trick if we fail to get Todibo. Great passer, but at the same time a good match for Martinez. We really need a player with his physique. We lack pace, power and agility (Casemiro, Amrabat, Lindelof, Maguire, Martinez dont offer too much of that, Varane is declining and always injured).

I prefer Todibo over Diomande as I think we need a more experienced player at this stage.

Silva is a good bet next summer, but with injuries on Shaw and Martinez, so is Inacio.
 

cesc's_mullet

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Is it me, or are there so many good young French CB's at the moment?
 

DWelbz19

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That 22-24 year old who is on the cusp of making the next big step up, and can become a star for us very quickly. There are high potential breakthrough players, then established quality players pre-prime, then quality players in their prime, and finally post or tail end prime quality players. We seem to sign a lot of players from the first or last category, whereas the core of our recruitment should come from the second category.
Definitely in agreement with this.
 

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Todibo seems to fit that profile of a player who is already very good but yet to take that next step to become a top, top player. Exactly the sort of profile we should be looking at. That 22-24 year old who is on the cusp of making the next big step up, and can become a star for us very quickly. There are high potential breakthrough players, then established quality players pre-prime, then quality players in their prime, and finally post or tail end prime quality players. We seem to sign a lot of players from the first or last category, whereas the core of our recruitment should come from the second category.
I agree, but bear in-mind, SAF used to sign tonnes of players from Premier League rivals, off the top of my head, I can think of big deals involving players from Spurs (Carrick & Berbatov), Leeds (Cantona, Ferdinand), Forest (Keane), Aston Villa (Yorke), Everton (Rooney), Arsenal (RvP)....sure I'll have missed loads, rattling those off quite quickly.

Point is, that's incredibly difficult to do now. If you want to sign a proven Premier League talent, who's in a lengthy contract, from a club like Spurs, West Ham, Villa or Brighton, it's going to cost you £100m.

We didn't used to have to take risks, we let the mid-tier clubs do that and then cherry-picked the best ones. That's no longer really a viable option, for the most part.

I think that buying power made us lazy and we haven't adapted (yet). We need to be wiser to the fact that once a player gets a Premier League transfer, it's too late.
 

Kingslayer18

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Same. I think we miss a trick if we fail to get Todibo. Great passer, but at the same time a good match for Martinez. We really need a player with his physique. We lack pace, power and agility (Casemiro, Amrabat, Lindelof, Maguire, Martinez dont offer too much of that, Varane is declining and always injured).

I prefer Todibo over Diomande as I think we need a more experienced player at this stage.

Silva is a good bet next summer, but with injuries on Shaw and Martinez, so is Inacio.

Agree, Todibo is a can't miss purchase. He's on the cusp of really breaking out and fulfilling the potential he has. There's a spot for him in the squad to come in and take over from Varane. He also has the ability to deputise as RB if we need him to.

If we're also looking at Silva, I'd rather go for Diomande who's around the same age. Diomande has the profile to not only be physically dominant but is already a great passer of the ball. I like Silva but I still think he lacks the pace I would prefer in a CB to cover wide spaces.
 

simonhch

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I agree, but bear in-mind, SAF used to sign tonnes of players from Premier League rivals, off the top of my head, I can think of big deals involving players from Spurs (Carrick & Berbatov), Leeds (Cantona, Ferdinand), Forest (Keane), Aston Villa (Yorke), Everton (Rooney), Arsenal (RvP)....sure I'll have missed loads, rattling those off quite quickly.

Point is, that's incredibly difficult to do now. If you want to sign a proven Premier League talent, who's in a lengthy contract, from a club like Spurs, West Ham, Villa or Brighton, it's going to cost you £100m.

We didn't used to have to take risks, we let the mid-tier clubs do that and then cherry-picked the best ones. That's no longer really a viable option, for the most part.

I think that buying power made us lazy and we haven't adapted (yet). We need to be wiser to the fact that once a player gets a Premier League transfer, it's too late.
You’re absolutely right about “ the where” we can buy players from changing. But that’s been the reality for a long time. In fact it goes back as far as 2012, at least, when Modric left Spurs for Real after Tottenham refused to sell to us. It was only three years before that that we were able to poach their star player.

But “the who” remains the same. And I guess it is inherently more risky to sign players from France and Germany etc., for reasonable fees. Yet as we’ve seen, it’s entirely possible because all our rivals have done it.

There will be misses. Of course. But a strategic vision and trusting our scouting network, means we’ll build a sustainably improving squad. Rather than the Frankenstein’s monster of band aids we’ve had for the last decade.

We originally signed Rangnick for that and he recommended we go for Enzo, Luis Diaz, Haaland, Nkunku, Gvardiol, Álvarez and Laimer. Most of whom could’ve been signed at that time for very reasonable fees. He was a terrible manager but he had a vision as a DoF. Yet we ignored him and sacked the plan off. Instead sticking with Murtough. Look at where most of those players are now and their values.

It pains me how stupid this club is. They had a long term vision with Rangnick, but when ETH came in and said he didn’t want to work with a DoF like that, we said “ok”, and terminated his contract. Ignoring all the mistakes we’d made in the past and letting the manager sign whoever he wanted.

This isn’t to lambast the manager; but if you bring a manager in who knows his career at your club is dependent on short term results (the previous three managers lasted less than 3 years), then it stands to reason he’s going to sign players who can deliver immediately at the highest level and not worry about where we’ll be in 2-3 years. We’ve created that situation where short term success is vital for their survival, and then given them the keys to the kingdom in terms of long term planning.

There’s a fundamental conflict of interest there and it’s why we have such ridiculous squad turnover and net spend. The owners are genuinely some of the stupidest people i have ever seen in business. But it’s not surprising. They inherited everything they got from their father, who was the one who built their “empire”. They are the Succession family come to life and in charge of our club.
 
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Bondi77

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I have no problem with getting Todibo in but it has to be Varane that goes....I thought his injury record was bad enough for the last two seasons but it is looking even worse now this season and at fecking 300mil quid a week...get rid sharpish!
 

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I have no problem with getting Todibo in but it has to be Varane that goes....I thought his injury record was bad enough for the last two seasons but it is looking even worse now this season and at fecking 300mil quid a week...get rid sharpish!
No wonder we had FFP problems! :eek:
 

garelo

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Tbf those 2 years on loan were also spent in the French league.
So you 2 dont think that Arsenal didnt monitored, guide, and mentored him to get him reach PL level standard during those 2 years? ok.

Saliba was 18 years old when Arsenal signed him and Arteta (joined Dec 2019) didn't feel he was ready to be a starter at 18 years of age, so was sent on loan. I personally thought it was a mistake to send him on loan because I felt at the time that Arteta could've developed him due to how poor Arsenal were at the time where they finished 8th, 8th, 5th before bringing him back and they finished 2nd.
Unlike Arsenal we have no privilege of giving our new CB time to learn their trade, he would and should go straight to starting xi next season considering the likes of Maguire, Varane, and Evans are most likely leaving. We have Lindelof, a CB who is good at passing but look how thing turned out for us? I dont want us to focus on passing while neglecting physicality needed to play in PL.
 

L1nk

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Replace Maguire with Todibo (shouldn't cost too much)
Swap Lindelof + money with Antonio Silva
If Varane wants to go, sell him to Saudi and replace him with G.Inacio or another LCB.
Then we have 4 top CBs, two at each side.
You’ve got 3 of the best young CB’s in Europe partnered with Martinez here and you think 2 of them are just going to be content sitting on the bench whilst their development sinks at a club like United? Come on..

You’re getting 2 of those 3 at the absolute best and considering this is Manchester United we’ll be lucky to get 1, and it should Antonio Silva if its for RCB, i’d get Scalvini if it was LCB
 

Adnan

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So you 2 dont think that Arsenal didnt monitored, guide, and mentored him to get him reach PL level standard during those 2 years? ok.



Unlike Arsenal we have no privilege of giving our new CB time to learn their trade, he would and should go straight to starting xi next season considering the likes of Maguire, Varane, and Evans are most likely leaving. We have Lindelof, a CB who is good at passing but look how thing turned out for us? I dont want us to focus on passing while neglecting physicality needed to play in PL.
What you said below is about Todibo I presume? So I'm not sure how you've come to the conclusion about Todibo being weak physically. He's definitely not weak physically and his out of possession game is very good. You definitely don't neglect the physical or athletic side with a player like Todibo.

79% aerial duel won, 66% all duels won in french league, is it right to say that i'm worried how he'd fare in more phsyical league like PL?
 

cesc's_mullet

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So you 2 dont think that Arsenal didnt monitored, guide, and mentored him to get him reach PL level standard during those 2 years? ok.



Unlike Arsenal we have no privilege of giving our new CB time to learn their trade, he would and should go straight to starting xi next season considering the likes of Maguire, Varane, and Evans are most likely leaving. We have Lindelof, a CB who is good at passing but look how thing turned out for us? I dont want us to focus on passing while neglecting physicality needed to play in PL.
When we signed Saliba we has the likes of Sokratis, Mustafi, Holding, Chambers, Pablo Mari and Luiz playing for us.

If you have a young talented CB then you have the privilege of being able to give them time to learn their trade.
 

Adnan

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When we signed Saliba we has the likes of Sokratis, Mustafi, Holding, Chambers, Pablo Mari and Luiz playing for us.

If you have a young talented CB then you have the privilege of being able to give them time to learn their trade.
Exactly why he should've been given a chance over those CBs who were nowhere near good enough for a team that had aspirations of winning the league.
 

cesc's_mullet

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Exactly why he should've been given a chance over those CBs who were nowhere near good enough for a team that had aspirations of winning the league.
At the time I wanted him to play straight away. But looking at how it's all turned out it seems the right decision was made.
 

garelo

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What you said below is about Todibo I presume? So I'm not sure how you've come to the conclusion about Todibo being weak physically. He's definitely not weak physically and his out of possession game is very good. You definitely don't neglect the physical or athletic side with a player like Todibo.
Well let's see, but if im honest he looks too skinny for CB.

When we signed Saliba we has the likes of Sokratis, Mustafi, Holding, Chambers, Pablo Mari and Luiz playing for us.

If you have a young talented CB then you have the privilege of being able to give them time to learn their trade.
yes saliba learnt his trade away from your starting xi or even bench. we havent got that privilege because this is our CB list this season:
Varane
Licha
Lindelof
Maguire
Evans

Chalk Varane, Maguire, Evans off next season and we left only with 2 CBs!!!! It wont be learning the trade but swim or sink for our new CB.
 

Adnan

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I was actually desperate for us to take advantage when he hadn't signed his contract and didn't look like he was trusted by Arteta. I would have him as the best CB in the league, in my opinion.
The good thing about the French league is that it never lets me down when looking for talent. Especially CB talent who I mention below.


There's a 17 year old right footed CB playing at Lille who looks to have big potential. His name is Leny Yoro and he's already around 1.90m in height at 17 years of age. Technically he's showing a very high level where his passing is very impressing already. He looks to have the pace and the intelligence to control larger spaces in defensive transition and it wouldn't surprise me to see this lad develop into a world class CB.
 

Bondi77

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The good thing about the French league is that it never lets me down when looking for talent. Especially CB talent who I mention below.


There's a 17 year old right footed CB playing at Lille who looks to have big potential. His name is Leny Yoro and he's already around 1.90m in height at 17 years of age. Technically he's showing a very high level where his passing is very impressing already. He looks to have the pace and the intelligence to control larger spaces in defensive transition and it wouldn't surprise me to see this lad develop into a world class CB.
In all fairness mate you were bigging up big Willy before he came to Utd and while he has had his fair share of injuries he is 19 now and does not look even close to making our squad and we have at best pretty average CBs.