Rio Ferdinand doubts the centre-half partnership of Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof is good enough for Manchester United.
Speaking after Manchester United’s 5-0 Champions League victory over RB Leipzig on Wednesday evening, Rio Ferdinand discussed the major weakness with Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof.
While United have now kept consecutive clean sheets for the first time this season, former defender Ferdinand remains unconvinced that United will win a major trophy with Maguire and Lindelof in the heart of the Red Devils’ defence.
Ferdinand also revealed that their lack of pace is such that it frightens him every time a game opens up and Maguire or Lindelof is forced to chase back.
“Is it good enough? I’d probably say no, if you’re trying to win the top competitions,” Ferdinand told BT Sport.
“Yes, last season they had a good defensive record, but I just see moments in games where they get opened up, they get physically dominated at times, especially in terms of pace, especially if their protection isn’t what you’d expect it to be if the game opens up a little bit.
“If the game opens up and they’re on the halfway line and they’re playing one-v-one or two-v-two, then I fear for my life in that situation. If the team shape is fine and it’s all set up properly, then they look a decent pairing.”
Joining Ferdinand on BT Sport was former teammate Paul Scholes, who addressed United’s defensive frailties from a midfield perspective.
Scholes discussed the importance of balance and explained that Maguire and Lindelof likely looked better in the last couple of games due to the protection of Fred and Scott McTominay.
“When they have the two (Fred and McTominay) in front of them, they look different,” Scholes said. “They had that little bit of protection that’s helped them. Not all of them (need it).
“You’re a defender for a reason, you’re supposed to be okay one-on-one, sometimes it can take away the attacking side of the team which it has done in the last couple of games, especially against Chelsea on Saturday. Fred and McTominay have definitely made them look better players, and they’ll prefer that.”