Zlatan is ‘like an old man playing football’ – McQueen

Date published: Monday 24th October 2016 12:50

Former Manchester United defender Gordon McQueen says Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been “very poor” for Jose Mourinho’s men this season and thinks the striker is struggling to deal with the “pace and intensity” of the Premier League.

Ibrahimovic was part of the Red Devils line-up that crashed to a humiliating 4-0 defeat to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

It was Mourinho’s first return to Chelsea since his sacking last season and the loss leaves United six points behind leaders Manchester City in seventh place.

McQueen, who made 184 appearances for United over seven years at Old Trafford, thinks Zlatan Ibrahimovic “is not good enough” to play for the club and is partly responsible for their poor form.

“Ibrahimovic has done nothing so far and looks very poor. He looks like an old man playing football,” he said.

“He might have got 50-odd goals in France last season, but it’s an inferior league to the Premier League and he is proving it this season.

“There is nothing like our league for pace and intensity, and he is finding it out the hard way.

“Of course, it would help if he got some good crosses from the wings, but he’s not making the most of the chances he does get and doesn’t seem able to find that yard of space where it really counts.

“It is not a lack of effort, I wouldn’t accuse any Manchester United of that, I just think he is not good enough, it’s as simple as that.

“There is no chance of him getting 30 goals this season. He will do well to reach double figures the way things are going.

“He scored a few at the start of the season, but it’s gone quiet for him and he isn’t able to bully Premier League defences as he could in France and elsewhere.”

Manchester United players

Despite his damning verdict on the 35-year-old, McQueen thinks United have broader issues than just the Swedish striker and their defence.

“It is not just the defence, it is the whole team. They are a million miles away from being a good team,” he added.

“They went a stupid goal behind after 30 seconds and it spooked them. They never recovered their composure after that.

“United teams of old would have regrouped, but this lot are not good enough to do it.

“It is a shadow of the defence that had Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic at its core. He brought in Eric Bailly, who has done okay, but no better than that. Mourinho can’t trust a settled defence because he doesn’t have reliable defenders who can do a job week in, week out.

“All Mourinho can do is hope that he can stay in touch with the leaders. What we’ve seen so far that might be a big ask.”

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