Having faced the toughness of the Premier League between 1998 and 2001, Jaap Stam knows what it takes to be successful as a Manchester United defender.
Stam joined United from Dutch club Feyenoord for a record fee for a defender at the time, costing £10.6 million.
Switching the Eredivisie for the Premier League this summer just like the three-time Premier League winner, a lot has been said about United centre-back Lisandro Martinez and his height.
The Argentine stands at just 5 feet 9 inches however, Stam does not believe this to be a problem for Martinez and United.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Stam said: “That was an easy one, the day when he signed for Manchester United, I had already said they will talk about his height.
“Over here (England), everyone thinks as a centre-back you need to be big and tall, otherwise you won’t make it.”
Since his arrival, Martinez has been fantastic, winning the club’s player of the month in his first month at the club.
After United’s opening two defeats of the season, Martinez has been partnered alongside Frenchman Raphael Varane, where the duo have played a huge part in United enjoying a win streak of four games in the league.
In that time, the Reds have conceded just twice to Liverpool and Arsenal.
Question marks had been asked of Martinez after United’s embarrassing defeat to Brentford, with the former Ajax man being substituted at half-time, but Stam believes this is normal.
He said: “Of course, sometimes he’s (Martinez) going to get surprised, but that’s what also happens with big players – they make mistakes as well.
“Martinez shows his quality on the ball, he shows his quality when defending and his communication around him is good.”
Martinez has previously faced off against Manchester City's Erling Haaland before in the Champions League a few seasons ago, where he proved that despite his height, he is able to handle strikers of Haaland's type.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
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