Jamie Carragher has told Manchester United’s Premier League rivals that “they’re crackers” if they do not target Lisandro Martinez.
The Argentina international was one of United’s marquee signings ahead of their first season under Erik ten Hag.
The Dutchman managed Martinez during their time together at Ajax. Ten Hag is clearly a huge fan of his, as he persuaded Man Utd to pay £56m to sign him.
Arsenal were also interested, but they ended up signing Oleksandr Zinchenko instead for a lesser fee of £30m.
The Ukraine international looks to be a better signing up to now, as Martinez was exposed over the weekend against Brentford.
The 5ft 9in defender was beaten in the air for Ben Mee’s goal as United ended up losing 4-0 in embarrassing fashion.
Carragher is “convinced” that Martinez cannot play at centre-back in the Premier League:
“The other problem he’s got is the signing of Lisandro Martinez,” Carragher said during Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football.
“Now, we should never judge managers or players too early, but I’m convinced this can’t work because the size of him playing in a back four.
“Maybe he could go left-back, maybe he could play in a back three, but in a back four, he cannot play there in the Premier League.”
Carragher went onto explain why Martinez will cause Man Utd a “huge problem” if Ten Hag continues to play him at centre-back in the league:
“Brighton are one of the best passing teams you’ll see in the Premier League,” Carragher added:
“So against Manchester United, they actually went 20 per cent of their passes long, the highest they’ve done since August 2021, the start of last season.
“Last season’s average was 12 per cent, so they doubled what they were doing because of the size of the Manchester United centre-back.
“Brentford’s manager, Thomas Frank, mentioned what Brighton did after the game. They went from 16 per cent to 21 per cent, again another jump.
“And the reason why they’re gonna have a huge problem with [Martinez] at centre-back is every single team that play Manchester United – maybe bar Man City and Liverpool, who might feel, ‘we don’t need to change for Man United’ – should target that. And if they don’t, they’re crackers.
“They really should do that and I think [United] have got a huge problem. And Ten Hag has got his finger prints a little bit over this team, and I think the two or three things he’s influenced are not working.”