By Andy Jones
- Schweinsteiger to leave Manchester United and join MLS side Chicago Fire
Louis Van Gaal signed the world cup winner, and German legend for a fee of £6.5m in the summer of 2015 from Bayern Munich.
His signing was greeted with a mixture of excitement amongst United fans. Along with a feeling that perhaps we were getting a player past his prime. Despite being only 30 at the time, becoming the first German to play for the first team at the club.
Two years later, and the naysayers are proved to be right. Despite having an almost cult status amongst the support, sadly, United didn’t get the best out of the German.
Schweinsteiger was a key member of the first team under Van Gaal during his final season with the club, and helped the team to the FA cup final, although he was injured for the Wembley showpiece.
Frozen Out By Jose
The arrival of Jose Mourinho signalled the end of the Germans United career. During pre season, it became clear that Jose deemed Schweinsteiger surplus to requirements, and he was asked to train with the U23’s.
In fact the writing was on the wall when his player card in the Fifa 17 franchise was downgraded from 86 to 83! and they rarely get it wrong.
Its worth mentioning perhaps that Rooney has been downgraded from 86 to 84! an indicator for the future perhaps.
It is to the Germans credit that he acted with such a level of professionalism, that Jose called upon his services and brought him back into the first team fold at the turn of the year.
Many players would have cried to their agents, released stories to the press, but Bastian kept his head down and got on with his duties.
A rare outing in the FA cup tie with Wigan was rewarded with a goal and a man of the match display, which asks the question as to why he hasn’t been used more since.
The final 20 minutes against Middlesbrough is the kind of game he is made for, a calming influence in the centre of the pitch.
Instead we got a back 6 camped on the edge of the 18 yard box, inviting a bombardment of crosses with no out ball into midfield.
Respected By Everyone Associated With Manchester United
His departure, alongside Depay and Schneiderlin leaves just Pogba, Herrera, Carrick and Fellaini as central midfield options, but the club had to act now, as the offer from the MLS was unlikely to be there at the end of the season.
The reaction on social media from both teammates and supporters suggests that Schweinsteiger was well liked and respected, and a good influence on the younger players.
The reality is that his signing, although relatively low risk, didn’t really deliver, and leaves with the general feeling of “if only we’d signed him 4 years earlier”, but the reality being, would Bayern have sold him, I very much doubt it