Two minutes play since November 2012 - Manchester United's potential Vidic replacement

Schalke 04

Manchester United are said to be looking at Kyriakos Papadopoulos of Schalke 04.

It was reported yesterday that Manchester United are interested in several stars of the Bundesliga.

The club are expected to undergo something of a facelift this summer - after a dismal first season under David Moyes at Old Trafford.

With that in mind the United boss is keen to put things right - by diving into the transfer market.

And one area which now certainly needs replacing is the centre back role being vacated by Nemanja Vidic - who is set to join Inter Milan on a free transfer in June.

And four Bundesliga stars are said to be on Moyes’ shortlist.

Borussia Dortmund star Mats Hummels, Hamburg SV youngster Jonathan Tah and Bayern Munich utility player Javi Martinez - all excellent potential additions.

The fourth name being mentioned comes as something a little more like a shock.

The player in question is Greek defender Kyriakos Papadopoulos.

The 21-year-old is contracted to Schalke 04 until 2016 and has previously been linked with a move to Liverpool - but that is not what makes their apparent interest in him perplexing.

The fact he has only played two minutes of top class football since November 2012 is certainly more of a worry.

He suffered a complete tear to his cruciate knee ligament in his left knee in November 2012, but a year later made his comeback.

However he managed just two minutes of football before suffering damage to the right knee ligament - which has ruled him out ever since.

In reality Papadopoulos is a sensational player - and in fact very much alike to Nemanja Vidic in playing style.

But why would they take a chance on a player who clearly has serious fitness and injury problems to replace a player with similar such problems.

What United need is a reliable steady central defender who can play week-in week-out without fail - Papadopoulos, for all his talent, is just not that.

image: © achimh

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