In demand Borussia Dortmund and German defender Mats Hummels has been linked to two top European clubs recently.
As Barcelona are looking for a replacement for the ageing Carles Puyol and Manchester United are suffering recurring injury setbacks to their central defenders, Hummels looks destined to leave BVB during the season's end transfer window.
Without a doubt a defender of his quality would walk right in to any starting eleven in the world thus he does not necessarily need to worry about restricted playing time. He was one half of the formidable defence which led the club to back to back titles in the past two seasons and has been coveted by United ever since.
As a ball playing central defender Mats often starts attacking moves from the back four line for his team. This would very well work at United as they so often look to build attacks from the back. Examples of this would be Rio Ferdinand who has time and again launched long passes to his forwards or playing a high line to initiate attacking moves.
Mats also has great technique when making tackles. He is strong and uses his size to his advantage when winning the ball as he looks to outmuscle defenders. Standing at a commanding 1.91m, this man has no issues dealing with aerial threats and isn’t afraid to challenge for the ball if need be.
The physical aspect of his game would work well in the Premier League as teams often play direct balls especially against United.
Given he is only 24-years of age, speed is still very much in his array of strengths giving him the pace to close down and catch up with fast opponents. A quality that is slowly fading away from the United back-line as age catches up with the regular starters.
Lastly, his top quality lies in the reading of the game.
He is able to predict and locate himself in strategic positions in order to intercept and cut off thru balls, crosses and drilled passes. As far as central defenders go, this is one of the most important aspects of the game for them to have and having this ability at a relatively young age speaks volumes of the maturity and experience Mats carries on to the field.
His ball playing approach as a defender has drawn comparisons with German legend Franz Beckenbauer. Although gone are the days where defenders venture with the ball at their feet all the way to the opposition goal, United would do well to add Hummels to the squad as he would fit perfectly into their system.
United defenders rarely hack and clear the ball in risky situations; they often play the ball out of danger and into an attack. Hummels would not be a stranger to such tactics as he is comfortable on the ball as well as relieving an opponent of its possession.
The only foreseeable drawback for the Red Devils lie in the amount they would have to invest in the German.
BVB has not signalled any intentions of allowing their star defender leave, and if the opportunity arises to make a sale - fans can be sure that their respective clubs would engaged in a bidding war -something United usually looks to avoid.
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