Lisandro Martinez joined Manchester United from Ajax this summer, and his small stature drew attention from critics.
Jaap Stam of Manchester United has admitted that he knew Lisandro Martinez’s height would be a talking point this summer.
United was chastised for signing Lisandro Martinez from Ajax in July for £46.8 million on a five-year contract, with pundits claiming he was too short to succeed in the physically demanding Premier League.
Martinez is the Premier League’s smallest center-back at 5ft 9ins, but that hasn’t stopped him from having an impressive start to his career in Manchester, where he has already become a fan favorite.
Before joining United in 1998, Stam established himself as one of Europe’s most exciting center-backs while playing in the Eredivisie, and he regularly watched Martinez play for Ajax during the three years he spent with Erik ten Hag in Amsterdam.
Stam knew Martinez’s height would be a talking point when he signed for United this summer, but he explained that it shouldn’t be an issue because the Argentine was brought in to help implement Ten Hag’s style of play.
“That was an easy one, I had already said the day he signed for United, they will talk about his height,” Stam told the Manchester Evening News. “Over here [England], everyone thinks you need to be big and tall to be a center-back; otherwise, you won’t make it.”
The thing is, the most important thing is to look at the big picture of how the manager wants to play. He wants to play dominant football, which necessitates having players at the back who are at ease with the ball.
“Of course, he’ll be surprised from time to time, but big players make mistakes as well.” Martinez demonstrates his quality on the ball, his quality when defending, and his communication with those around him is excellent.
“All he has to do is keep going.”
Leave a Reply