With all the defensive worries that Manchester United have had this term, Louis Van Gaal is reportedly weighing up a swap deal to acquire Atletcio Madrid’s Miranda with Juan Mata. All through this summer, the Old Trafford outfit were continually linked with several centre backs including Aston Villa captain Rob Vlaar, Thomas Vermaleen and Moroccan, Mehdi Benatia. Having witnessed the worst start to the Premier League in years, Manchester United negotiated a deal with Sporting Lisbon for Marcos Rojo to help out at the back, but serious injury worries have hampered United’s performances this season and the United boss is said to be shopping for a seasoned back man to ease him of the worries.
Van Gaal has risked a make-shift defence for most matches this season with a couple of youth team defenders making their debuts for the senior team. But the Dutchman is aware of the fact that his team has only managed a single clean sheet in their 4-0 drubbing of the Queens Park Rangers and will be looking to introduce some experienced leaders in the heart of his defence. Miranda would perfectly fit into the scheme of things at Old Trafford with the 30 year old being an integral member of Atletico’s success under Diego Simeone’s watch in recent seasons.
Juan Mata who is being tipped as the sacrificial lamb fell out of favour at Chelsea, when Jose Mourinho chastised the Spaniard for not helping out with defensive duties. This development came at a time when erstwhile United manager, David Moyes was having it tough with transfers at the club. The Scot who took over from the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson failed to land any marquee signing in his first and only summer having missed out on Anders Herrera and Cesc Fabregas and only managed to secure Fellaini who never really broke into the starting line-up. With Moyes’s £37m bid accepted by Chelsea, Juan Mata switched to the Old Trafford outfit. In fairness to Mata, he has been doing his part although he still doesn’t track back to help United’s defensive block and usually appears to be easily outmuscled, the Spaniard has scored about 8 goals in his last 12 games and also made several assists one of which was the pass he laid down for Angel Di Maria to score United’s first goal against the Toffees last weekend.
However, since the arrival of Colombian forward Radamel Falcao, Juan seemed to have lost his place in the 3 man attacking prong designed by Van Gaal. Mata who had hitherto been assured of a place behind team captain Wayne Rooney and Dutchman Robin Van Persie has now dropped to the bench and will be competing for game time with youngsters James Wilson and Adnan Januzaj. The United boss may have agreed to ship out Mata based on third logical reasons. Firstly, Radamel Falcao and Wayne Rooney both have an enviable work rate, with new boy Falcao showing a glimpse of what United should expect when he was on hand to clear out an Everton effort off the line last Sunday. Secondly, Van Gaal is said to be trying to make Falcao’s stay permanent and as such Juan will become surplus to requirements. Finally, Van Gaal has two other low salaried options in Wilson and Januzaj, hence if Atletico are willing to do business, then from all at Old Trafford, it could be good bye Juan Mata.