Potential Matic Replacements

UNITED ACADEMY

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De Jong. He hasn't been all that impressive at Barca and I'm sure they'd consider a big offer. He'd transform that midfield almost immediately.
This is very deluded though. De Jong is still a regular starter in Barcelona team, Barcelona is not stupid enough to sell him now with Busquest & Rakitic are in their 30s & De Jong's dream club is Barcelona. It'll be Dybala all over again that even if Barcelona accept the offer, De Jong will tell his agent to refuse the contract offer. He ain't say yes to us as he's a Barcelona regular starter in midfield.
 

Mark Pawelek

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Lindelof to be either replaced by Bailly or sign someone like Ibrahima Konate who looks perfect for the role next to Maguire.
Konate has been injured since 3 October 2019 with the same injury - torn muscle! I can't find any young, fast, tall, injury-free, available centre-backs playing in a top league! Good luck finding someone better than Bailly - who ain't giant-sized anyhow! I think we stick with who we have for the time being.
 

Adnan

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Konate has been injured since 3 October 2019 with the same injury - torn muscle! I can't find any young, fast, tall, injury-free, available centre-backs playing in a top league! Good luck finding someone better than Bailly - who ain't giant-sized anyhow! I think we stick with who we have for the time being.
Konate has been injured but that doesn't mean he will stay injured. His injury could be due to being overplayed at a young age when he had to cover for Upamecano due to injury. But overall Konate has been fine regards fitness.

And you end by saying "good luck finding someone better than Bailly" are you having a laugh? Because in his 4 years at the club, there's dime a dozen CBs who would've performed better than him in the same time period.
 

Mark Pawelek

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Konate has been injured but that doesn't mean he will stay injured. His injury could be due to being overplayed at a young age when he had to cover for Upamecano due to injury. But overall Konate has been fine regards fitness.

And you end by saying "good luck finding someone better than Bailly" are you having a laugh? Because in his 4 years at the club, there's dime a dozen CBs who would've performed better than him in the same time period.
Sure, Doctor Adnan.
 

Rampant Red Rodriguez

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For my 50 cents opinion, I think that we have to understand that the DM job done by Matic isn't so expensive for energy expenditure as a DM. I think form willing he can be with us in a part time player for a few more years yet.

Remember that Carrick and Giggs played in CM into their mid 30's and other CM from recent history (Fellaini and Herrera) were in good form for us in their early 30's. If Matic is a good professional then his body will allow him to be a good part time man in a DM for us. Experience counts for alot in such a tactical role and its needed with our young squad.

I think if we are to replace the man with another like for like player then it's got to be someone who is experienced enough to play the tactical game for us and not an up and coming cmid.
 

Kingslayer18

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Jude Bellingham has a very good defensive game. He definitely looks like he has all the CDM skill set.
It would appear they're targeting him to eventually replace Matic as DM. Although from articles I've read on him, he looks more like a box-to-box player. If they don't get him, barring them getting Zakaria over the summer, they should really go and target Camavinga. Similar profile as Bellingham, but already excelling as a DM and bossing midfields in France at 17/18. You can then rotate him with Matic and for him to take over once Matic's contract is up.
 
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seegoblu

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David Alaba would be a mobile, forward passing DM to slot into the lineup. He recently hired a new agent and wants the job Bayern just gave to Kimmich, so it seems like a fit here.
 

NoPace

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David Alaba would be a mobile, forward passing DM to slot into the lineup. He recently hired a new agent and wants the job Bayern just gave to Kimmich, so it seems like a fit here.
I had hopes for this a while ago because we seemed like one of the bigger clubs that could still agree to make him a full-time DM.

Same reason you'd think we (and maybe Leicester) should be able to sell any RW not named Sanho on a starting spot rather than backing up Salah or fighting with Mahrez, Pepe, Ziyech, or Bergwijn/Son (dunno who the RW is) if we're talking Prem teams.

Alaba's play for Austria (from the little I've seen) at CM and how good he's been at CB makes me think he'd be great as DM partnered with Fred providing a nice platform for 4 attackers (Bruno, Rashford, the RW we need to sign and then Martial, Greenwood, James and hopefully a backup 10 like Grealish fighting for spot 4 and being the main 3 subs).
 

SambaBoy

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I had hopes for this a while ago because we seemed like one of the bigger clubs that could still agree to make him a full-time DM.

Same reason you'd think we (and maybe Leicester) should be able to sell any RW not named Sanho on a starting spot rather than backing up Salah or fighting with Mahrez, Pepe, Ziyech, or Bergwijn/Son (dunno who the RW is) if we're talking Prem teams.

Alaba's play for Austria (from the little I've seen) at CM and how good he's been at CB makes me think he'd be great as DM partnered with Fred providing a nice platform for 4 attackers (Bruno, Rashford, the RW we need to sign and then Martial, Greenwood, James and hopefully a backup 10 like Grealish fighting for spot 4 and being the main 3 subs).
Alaba is more of a box to box player when played in midfield, in the mould of Fred rather than a DM. In saying that, he could definitely play that role.

But buying a LB for a massive price, and putting him in a midfield role that is not natural too him might be a risk. I know he grew up playing that position, and plays there for Austria and Bayern occasionally but I would rather just focus on a pure DM. I would still take Alaba for a box to box role as well if the price is right however.
 

NoPace

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Alaba is more of a box to box player when played in midfield, in the mould of Fred rather than a DM. In saying that, he could definitely play that role.

But buying a LB for a massive price, and putting him in a midfield role that is not natural too him might be a risk. I know he grew up playing that position, and plays there for Austria and Bayern occasionally but I would rather just focus on a pure DM. I would still take Alaba for a box to box role as well if the price is right however.
I'm assuming Alaba is reasonable enough to acknowledge that if it doesn't work out and he's just average he'll move back to LB or be Maguire's partner.

We could also play 4-3-3:

-Rashford-Martial-RW (Greenwood, James, Striker)
----Alaba-Fred-Bruno----- (McTominay, Matic, a #10)
Shaw-Maguire-CB-AWB (Lindelof, Bailly, Williams, Dalot)

if he's one of our big 4 signings this summer and Pogba leaves. Bruno has been great in a free role but he plays there for Portugal and his crossing ands shooting mean he can contribute offensively from that deeper role.

Also worth noting he might enjoy playing as an LWB and the freer offensive role so be open to filling that space when we play 3-5-2 as we have in big games this season, and he'd be an upgrade there, with McTominay brought in and one of Martial or the RW dropped and Bruno moved up a bit.
 

Bondi77

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Why wouldn't you spend the money and buy Saul.

Perfect age (25), knows United have wanted him for a very long time, decent chance Atletico may not qualify for CL (same for United as well), has big game temperament and success both in la liga and in europe and doesn't go hiding.
From what I have read in the past Saul loves Atletico and he has massive respect for Simeone.
The guy is at a club which pay massive wages anyway so I think the only way they would sell would be if we made a ridiculous offer and I think the way we are now we are not going to make ridiculous offers for anyone.
 

izec

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Right after RW, we need a DM the most IMO. People say Fred and McTom, but both are nowhere near good enough to be DMs positionally, passing and just in general defensive nous is missing.

Go full out and buy one.
 

Adnan

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Someone who could distribute the ball and cover ground quickly would be ideal imo.

Ndidi is someone that I hope we don't sign due to his limited ability on the ball. I can foresee opposition letting him have the ball whilst they press the other midfielder.
 

Cheekiey

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What happened to those links with Florentino from Benfica, he looked a tidy player, Wan Bissaka esque with his tackling ability but with the ability to look up and play a pass.
 

gajender

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What happened to those links with Florentino from Benfica, he looked a tidy player, Wan Bissaka esque with his tackling ability but with the ability to look up and play a pass.
Resident Portuguese league experts on here believe he isn't good enough and more of a hype job.
 

Adnan

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Resident Portuguese league experts on here believe he isn't good enough and more of a hype job.
That was the opinion of one SCP fan. It's like asking a Liverpool fan about one of our prospects.

I've also seen the views of Benfica fans on their forums and many believe the Benfica hierachy are about to shoot themselves in the foot ala Bernardo Silva.
 

LawCharltonBest

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Only way we’ll get the best out of Pogba and Fernandes playing together is to have Matic behind them imo. So I’d have him as first choice DM for the next season.
 

BenitoSTARR

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I think it's a really difficult pick to make with clearly two opposing thoughts.

I've though long and hard about this and I think we need a composed fixed deeper point on the pitch. Capable of being a consistent out ball and capable of being the link between the right and left sides of the pitch. So for example if Bruno and Pogba have to go back from the inside left and right channels you want someone behind who even if pressed will be able to connect that initial pass onto an area of space. Matic is that player currently best suited in our squad although McTominay could develop into it too.

Now if you are inclined to disagree and believe we need 'legs' or a ball winner fair enough options are available in the table.

For me there are clear winners. Those who want a destroyer should advocate the signing of Ndidi. He is top for key defensive actions and already PL proven.

Those who want a deep playmaker Koopmeiners is the clear winner. He's averaging the highest amount of passes, long balls and pass successes. Clearly a great play making option regardless of your league difficulty opinion. He also has 11 goals to his name.


(Stats for current 19/20 season only and all are per 90)

Player
Tackles
InterceptionsAerials WonFoulsDribbled PastClearances Blocks
Assists (Total)
Key PassesAvg PassesPass Success %Long BallsThrough BallsDispossessedBad Touches
Ndidi3.92.62.81.61.42.20.310.550.583.82.700.80.7
Zakaria2.31.70.910.910.520.440.486.71.90.10.81.1
Partey2.31.41.81.31.11.10.310.852.183.43.60.10.50.9
Koopmeiners1.91.20.91.21.420.3318386.86.200.91
Rice2.92.11.511.51.40.320.444.885.9300.60.7
 

jamesjimmybyrondean

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It's going to be hard to find anyone as good as him. We definitely should look for a DM that's composed and can move the ball forward from defense and can also protect that defense
 

IrishMcD

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It's going to be hard to find anyone as good as him. We definitely should look for a DM that's composed and can move the ball forward from defense and can also protect that defense
My fear is that people at the club will see his recent performances and think his form is back so we don't need a replacement.
He needs someone to share the role with, he can't be expected to play every game at his age and we have no one in the squad who can play the role he does effectively. Fred and McT just aren't capable of playing that role. A defensive minded midfielder who reads the game well, and is calm on the ball and can distribute quickly and can carry it out of defence when needed.
If we leave him without any proper competition again, he will burn out quickly and his levels will drop and he will start getting abuse thrown at him again.
 

BenitoSTARR

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Low and behold as people clamour for a destroyer a composed Matic helps keep us ticking.
 

BenitoSTARR

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Matic at his best (i.e. in his few seasons at Chelsea) was both. Was a monster in Mourinho's last title win.
I can’t remember if I said it on this thread or another but the whole point of a Matic is to allow us to get our shape back.

It should never be one players job to defend. He delays counters long enough for us to get shape.

I don’t really care about what he used to be what he is now is exactly what is needed to enable creativity.
 

jamesjimmybyrondean

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I can’t remember if I said it on this thread or another but the whole point of a Matic is to allow us to get our shape back.

It should never be one players job to defend. He delays counters long enough for us to get shape.

I don’t really care about what he used to be what he is now is exactly what is needed to enable creativity.
You're right about this. When teams collect the ball and attack us you don't just have only Matic running and trying to stop the play in midfield. He delays it while Bruno Pogba and the rest come back to help in defense and we defend deep allowing us to counter, our greatest strength
 

BenitoSTARR

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You're right about this. When teams collect the ball and attack us you don't just have only Matic running and trying to stop the play in midfield. He delays it while Bruno Pogba and the rest come back to help in defense and we defend deep allowing us to counter, our greatest strength
It’s been a real frustration for me the past 3 months because I’ve been arguing this about our DM, that our midfield has to include Pogba and Bruno and whatever player compliments that most, that Martial will come good and that we’ve only suffered really due in large part to injuries.

Finally the proof is appearing on the pitch.
 

jamesjimmybyrondean

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It’s been a real frustration for me the past 3 months because I’ve been arguing this about our DM, that our midfield has to include Pogba and Bruno and whatever player compliments that most, that Martial will come good and that we’ve only suffered really due in large part to injuries.

Finally the proof is appearing on the pitch.
What DM do you think we should be looking at?
 

BenitoSTARR

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What DM do you think we should be looking at?
People aren’t going to like it but you have to look at style over name.

Look at players who aren’t diving into challenges but slow opposition play. Look for the ability to play line breaking passes from time to time and look for composure with quick decisive passes when under pressure.

People get into their heads a DM is the defender who breaks up play but that kind of DM is high risk high reward. We want low risk, the reason being we are going to be playing the vast majority of games as favourites. We already have a good system for counter attacking which is why our record against big sides is so good. We need a holder for all the other games.

In my previous postI discussed some of the better known names.

Feel free anyone to dive in and slate me but after a lot of consideration I’ll list that fit the profile this is just so people get an idea:
  • Koopmeiners
  • Rice
I’m well aware they aren’t glamorous names but they fit what we want. They aren’t too aggressive, they aren’t risky defenders. They contain and pass. Both are composed and both can a good long ball or fast pass back under pressure.

Ndidi is currently not the style of player I would go for and I used to think he’d be a good fit but now I’m entirely convinced the above two are style wise a better fit.

Happy to expand on why.
 

jamesjimmybyrondean

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People aren’t going to like it but you have to look at style over name.

Look at players who aren’t diving into challenges but slow opposition play. Look for the ability to play line breaking passes from time to time and look for composure with quick decisive passes when under pressure.

People get into their heads a DM is the defender who breaks up play but that kind of DM is high risk high reward. We want low risk, the reason being we are going to be playing the vast majority of games as favourites. We already have a good system for counter attacking which is why our record against big sides is so good. We need a holder for all the other games.

In my previous postI discussed some of the better known names.

Feel free anyone to dive in and slate me but after a lot of consideration I’ll list that fit the profile this is just so people get an idea:
  • Koopmeiners
  • Rice
I’m well aware they aren’t glamorous names but they fit what we want. They aren’t too aggressive, they aren’t risky defenders. They contain and pass. Both are composed and both can a good long ball or fast pass back under pressure.

Ndidi is currently not the style of player I would go for and I used to think he’d be a good fit but now I’m entirely convinced the above two are style wise a better fit.

Happy to expand on why.
I know of Koopmeiners but we should be wary of someone that plays in Eredivisie and hasn't shun in Europe. How's his defence like? I know he is very composed on the ball and a very good passer but I'm not sure of his defensive attributes. Also for Rice I know he's good defensive wise but he's been criticised for other aspects of his game that you yourself says the DM we need should have. How is his passing - does he make like breaking passes, good with long balls etc. Is he composed or does he panic when pressed?
 

E-mal

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People aren’t going to like it but you have to look at style over name.

Look at players who aren’t diving into challenges but slow opposition play. Look for the ability to play line breaking passes from time to time and look for composure with quick decisive passes when under pressure.

People get into their heads a DM is the defender who breaks up play but that kind of DM is high risk high reward. We want low risk, the reason being we are going to be playing the vast majority of games as favourites. We already have a good system for counter attacking which is why our record against big sides is so good. We need a holder for all the other games.

In my previous postI discussed some of the better known names.

Feel free anyone to dive in and slate me but after a lot of consideration I’ll list that fit the profile this is just so people get an idea:
  • Koopmeiners
  • Rice
I’m well aware they aren’t glamorous names but they fit what we want. They aren’t too aggressive, they aren’t risky defenders. They contain and pass. Both are composed and both can a good long ball or fast pass back under pressure.

Ndidi is currently not the style of player I would go for and I used to think he’d be a good fit but now I’m entirely convinced the above two are style wise a better fit.

Happy to expand on why.
Partey has that ability, very good with press and his distribution is very good.
I honestly believe he will make the difference.
 

BenitoSTARR

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I know of Koopmeiners but we should be wary of someone that plays in Eredivisie and hasn't shun in Europe. How's his defence like? I know he is very composed on the ball and a very good passer but I'm not sure of his defensive attributes. Also for Rice I know he's good defensive wise but he's been criticised for other aspects of his game that you yourself says the DM we need should have. How is his passing - does he make like breaking passes, good with long balls etc. Is he composed or does he panic when pressed?
So Koop has been a big part of AZ success in Eredivise. Defensively he isn’t rash he’s similar to Matic in terms of slowing down attacks but he’s got enough about him to step in a few times a game when needed. He’s actually occasionally played CB as a sort of Conor Coady deep playmaker before.

His passing range long and short is excellent and he’s good at circulating the ball and finding wide men like Stengs. He’s comfortable around the opponents box too enabled transitions from one flank to another securely. He’d be very affordable and I think would have the right character for Ole too. His composure is excellent he deals with pressure brilliantly and he’s even good at taking penalties.

Id take a gamble on him in a heartbeat.

I feel like I see a completely different player to some people when watching Rice and I think he’s been limited by West Ham not his ability. The ocassions I’ve seen him caught out he’s had zero support.

He would be the worse passer of the two but I think a lot of that is down to poor movement in front. He tries the right ball but is often let down.
 

RedDevilRoshi

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Partey has that ability, very good with press and his distribution is very good.
I honestly believe he will make the difference.
The dream DM signing that I want us to make.

A midfield trio of him, Pogba & Bruno will be absolutely exciting to watch.
 

BenitoSTARR

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Partey has that ability, very good with press and his distribution is very good.
I honestly believe he will make the difference.
I agree Partey does however there is a key difference in his game. He’s more aggressive in the press and recovery and that I think would be our problem. We need someone who thinks contain initially unless there is a heavy and winnable touch.

If you look I included him in my table of 5 potential signings, he’s definitely someone I’ve researched a lot to consider.




It’s the same reason Fred doesn’t work as a DM and to be fair to Partey it could be systematic rather than his tendency.