Germany head coach Joachim Low has suggested that Manchester United made a mistake in not utilising Bastian Schweinsteiger better during his time at Old Trafford.
What has long felt like an inevitable conclusion was reached on Tuesday morning as it was announced that the 32-year-old World Cup winner was swapping Old Trafford for Major League Soccer after a four-month courtship.
Schweinsteiger struggled to live up to his reputation as one of the world’s best midfielders after arriving from Bayern Munich in the summer of 2015 and made just four United appearances since Mourinho’s arrival.
It was a surprise that he made any after being frozen out of the first team by the Portuguese, dropping so far down the pecking order that the club even wrote him off as an asset in their accounts.
Schweinsteiger remained a peripheral figure upon his return to the fold and is now heading to the United States – a move Germany boss Low believes is good for the player, if not necessarily United.
“We spoke some weeks ago,” Low said of the former Germany captain, who made 121 appearances before retiring last year.
“He said that in training he has given everything he has got, he has shown the coach what he can do and for a while there was some light on the horizon.
“But at the end of the day it seems like it was just not to be in Man U, so he has chosen to join a club in a big city, which he quite likes because big cities give him a certain degree of anonymity which he also enjoys.
“Like I said, he trained very well and sometimes the team themselves will have wished for him to help the team.
“I have seen some Man United games where they could have well done with a central midfielder, a kind of chief organiser in midfield, who puts things right.
“But the USA will give him a new experience and he certainly has my blessing.”