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Erik ten Hag reveals importance of Lisandro Martinez to Manchester United blueprint

Cain Smith

| Last updated 

Erik ten Hag reveals importance of Lisandro Martinez to Manchester United blueprint

Erik ten Hag has revealed the importance of having Lisandro Martinez at Manchester United in his latest press conference.

The defender was a key player at Ten Hag's Ajax. The pair won the Eredivisie last campaign together.

Martinez ended the season with the Player of the Year award and it was clear that they had a top level ball playing defender on their hands.

Lisandro Martinez and Erik ten Hag. (Alamy)
Lisandro Martinez and Erik ten Hag. (Alamy)

That was so important in Ten Hag's system, and he wanted to bring that quality across to United, who have struggled building from the back in recent years.

After some intervention from Mikel Arteta's Arsenal, and also some stubbornness from his parent side, Martinez finally got his move to Old Trafford and the Premier League.

He is currently the only left-footed centre-back at the club, and it seems likely that he will slot into the left centre-back role at United.

When asked about the importance of having a left footed player in those deeper areas ahead of the Premier League opener against Brighton, Ten Hag was detailed, yet precise in his reply.

"The left-footed are better oriented on the left side and in possession you get better angles," he explained.

"Out of possession, because the orientation is better, it’s easier and more comfortable to go out and cover a full-back, for example.”


Harry Maguire has operated on the left side of the centre-back pairing since his arrival at Old Trafford in 2019.

From pre-season, it seems that he will be making the switch to the right in order to pair up with Martinez this season.

It will be a change, but as Ten Hag detailed: with more natural orientation on the right, Maguire could become more than comfortable on that side.

When previous speaking on Martinez's profile, Ten Hag has been extremely complimentary.

“He’s a warrior and I think the fans will admire him. He has an attitude, fighting spirit,

“He brings aggressiveness in the game, in a good way. I think we need that.

Lisandro Martinez posing in a Manchester United shirt. (Man Utd)
Lisandro Martinez posing in a Manchester United shirt. (Man Utd)

“But also, he’s also skilful and he can deal with the ball and he’s left-footed.

“I think it’s important (his mentality), yeah. I think the Premier League is high intensity, lots of challenges. We need such players [with fighting spirit],"

Featured Image Credit: Manchester United

Topics: Manchester United, Erik Ten Hag, Lisandro Martinez, Harry Maguire, Football, Premier League, Brighton And Hove Albion

Cain Smith
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