I'd like to ask you to rewind back to the summer of 2007 when Owen Hargreaves signed for Manchester United.
Here was a player who was perfect for United’s midfield woes; he had good technique, was hard in the tackle and could take a wicked free-kick. When you add in the fact that Hargreaves joined United on the back of a season in which he broke his leg, the similarities between Hargreaves’ switch to United and that of the potential deal to bring Borussia Dortmund star Ilkay Gundogan to United become clearer.
Hargreaves was by no means a bad player for United and had he not had so many injuries, his name might still have been sang at Old Trafford to this day.
Unfortunately however he only managed to make 27 appearances in the Premier League in four seasons and so the £17million spent on him seems like a bit of a waste. It is for this reason why United must be careful in their pursuit of Gundogan.
It is well known that due to his back injury, Gundogan has been restricted to just one Bundesliga appearance this season and this is probably one of the reasons Dortmund have struggled so much this campaign.
Until Gundogan regains full fitness and has an extended run of games in the first team, it will be difficult to assess the impact of the injury on his playing ability.
Serious injuries have ended up plaguing players in the past, such as Owen Hargreaves, Michael Essien and Eduardo. After they sustain a serious injury, they often struggle to return to the standard of play they were displaying before, perhaps because they are anxious of aggravating the injury again.
There is of course a beaming light of optimism for Gundogan and therefore United to take, and that is that Gundogan is still young at the age of just 23 and so could follow the lead of fellow box-to-box midfielder Aaron Ramsey, who defied the odds to return from his horrible leg break back in February of 2010.
Gundogan is a great passer of the ball and an excellent dribbler, but is also more than capable of closing down the opposition effectively and winning the ball back for his team.
It is for these reasons why David Moyes is interested in the player and due to Dortmund apparently being keen on being reunited with Shinji Kagawa, some form of swap deal could be done this summer.
However Moyes should think carefully about the possibility of a recurring problem to the man he is looking at for the summer, otherwise he could easily end up buying a player who may just do him more harm than good.
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