One of Manchester United’s former defensive greats has given his take on who is the current weakest link in the Red Devils’ backline.
In an exclusive interview with Mirror Football, retired England international Paul Parker revealed that Luke Shaw is the weakest link in United’s defence, the former Red Devils star went on to say that the attack-minded full-back doesn’t have ‘enough variety to his game’.
Parker was a right-back for the Manchester outfit for five years, during his time at Old Trafford the Fulham academy graduate won two Premier League titles as well as an FA Cup and League Cup trophy.
Shaw was one of the less flattering performers from United’s impressive 4-0 victory against Chelsea last weekend.
Here’s what Parker had to say on Shaw:
“I felt really sorry for Shaw under Jose Mourinho. He didn’t deserve what Jose gave him. Mourinho should have been helping him especially after suffering such a horrific broken leg.
“But I don’t think Shaw’s helped himself, either. He should have been on the best diet and fitness regime in the world to prove himself but he’s not.
“He’s just not kicked on in the way I’d have hoped. He’s a throwback defender from my era and when he goes forward there’s not enough variety to his game.
“He doesn’t do anything different. He can’t beat people, he hasn’t got a trick with the ball at his feet.
“It’s a push and run or a ball in behind for him to run on to.
“I understand what Mourinho was saying the other day against Chelsea in that Maguire will have problems covering for Shaw who sometimes goes missing.”
Jose Mourinho slammed the 24-year-old during his coverage of last week’s clash for Sky Sports, here’s what he had to say:
Mourinho: "When Maguire has to cover Luke Shaw, and he will need to realise that he will need to do that a lot of times this season, they are not closing down the space in the box." #mufc
— ManUnitedZone (@ManUnitedZone_) August 11, 2019
This particular fan wasn’t too pleased with Shaw’s performance against Chelsea:
This was just one of the many times Luke Shaw left his area unoccupied, forcing Maguire to close down Shaw’s man and potentially exposing Lindelof to a 2v1. Chelsea didn’t exploit these situations but better sides will. Contrastingly, take note of AWB’s positional awareness. pic.twitter.com/KprjAd2z8w
— TC. (@tacticentro) August 13, 2019
After seeming to overcome constant injury problems in the last year, Shaw will be hoping to establish himself as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s first-choice at left-back this season.
The 24-year-old should also be working to compete with youngster Ben Chilwell for the starting spot in England’s team.
After a troubled few seasons, a good campaign for Shaw would simply be one in which he can maintain his fitness and not suffer any injury setbacks.