As Manchester United lose 5-3, €9m summer defensive target is sent off in Italy

Stefan De Vrij

Stefan de Vrij's recent form would not have made him a big improvement on what Manchester United currently have at the back.

Manchester United's decision not to sign a central defender this summer cam under some serious scrutiny this evening after they lost 5-3 to Leicester City - throwing away a 3-1 lead in the process.

Tyler Blackett is talented, but still positionally naive. Jonny Evans and Phil Jones are walking treatment rooms while Chris Smalling, in a harsh reality, is not Manchester United standard. Allowing Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic to leave was the right choice, both were passed their best, but to not replace them has proven criminal.

One player they were linked heavily with was Netherlands defender Stefan de Vrij. He had an excellent World Cup under the tutelage of Louis van Gaal - and United were linked heavily with a deal to bring them in.

But van Gaal then decided he did not want his countryman in his squad, allowing Lazio to swoop in and snap him up for an undisclosed fee.

It seemed foolish not to snap him up, but in hindsight it is looking like a good decision, despite United's current defensive woes.

Because given de Vrij's current form in Italy, they would not be doing much better with him available.

He has been widely criticised for his early displays on the Italian capital and today he hit rock-bottom. He managed to receive two yellow cards in quick succession against Genoa in a game in which Lazio were slowly building momentum

De Vrij however was sent off in the 85th minute and in the 87th minute, former Hearts striker Mauricio Pinilla scored a winning goal for the home team.

A bad day at the office for Blackett and co it may have been, but de Vrij would not have been much help.

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