Noel Whelan believes Manchester United may have made a mistake with the signing of centre-back Lisandro Martinez after he was targeted again in another Red Devils defeat.
The former Leeds forward claims that the 24-year-old Argentina international is going to “get absolutely battered by centre-forwards” in England after Brentford continually targeted him on Saturday.
Martinez was hauled off at half-time Erik ten Hag with United 4-0 down in a game they went on to lose by the same scoreline.
Bees boss Thomas Frank then admitted to Sky Sports after the match that his side up to target the 5ft 9in centre-back after seeing Brighton employ a similar tactic in the season opener.
Ten Hag worked hard to bring the player to Old Trafford after working with him at Ajax. Indeed, United could end up paying a fee of £56.7million for the player, with add-ons included.
And Whelan feel that there is no aggression in Martinez‘s game. Adding that he would have ‘loved’ to play against him.
He told Football Insider: “When I played against Man United, I played against Pallister, Bruce, Stam.
“I look at Martinez – and I just think he’s going to get absolutely battered by centre-forwards.
“Right now, I don’t see any aggression from him. I don’t see him challenging certain centre-forwards.
Martinez a dream opponent for physical forwards
“I’m not sure about this one. I know Ten Hag was desperate to bring him in. But I want to see someone with a presence.
“I would love to play against him – and I’m sure most centre-forwards would.
“That’s not someone who is going to intimidate you when you walk out onto the pitch. That’s someone you’re thinking: ‘Let me get on him all game.”
Things do not get any easier for Martinez and United, with Liverpool next up on Monday August 22.
That could mean a match-up with Darwin Nunez for Martinez, unless Ten Hag opts to take him out of the firing line.
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