Shinji Kagawa ready to be Manchester United’s main man

by Sam Peoples

Shinji Kagawa has been extremely impressive for Manchester United since his summer move from Borussia Dortmund. The Japanese playmaker has been an integral part to a new system that has brought the best out of the team. However, only having two goals and an assist to his name, he wants to be offering more to the squad.

“They [United staff] have told me not to face the goal with my back, but move my body so I have a short way to the goal,” he said.

“[I must] shape my body so I am facing the stands. I have to face the goal or I won’t be a threat.”

“I’ve realised that I need to limber up and strengthen my body trunk.”

“We’re very pleased with Shinji. Adapting to English football isn’t easy but bit by bit he’s getting down to that part. You always try and improve your players; that’s our job as coaches and hopefully we can improve Kagawa.” Sir Alex Ferguson

It sounds like Kagawa will be adapting his game and body in order to become a more direct goal threat rather than always looking for a team-mate and with the physicality of the Premier League, upping his body strength will do wonders for his game.

The introduction of a midfield diamond, Manchester United worked in free flowing harmony at St James’ Park on Sunday. The protection of Michael Carrick gave Tom Cleverley, Shinji Kagawa and Wayne the creative freedom that allowed us to overpower Newcastle’s physical midfield.

However, the prominent performance of Wayne Rooney ‘in the hole’ might be an indication of what is to happen in the future in order to get Rooney, van Persie and Kagawa playing together in the same team.

Up until this point, Shinji Kagawa’s statistics are impressive. He has completed 90.1% (256/284) of his passes, created seven direct chances, won 57.1% of his tackles and has been involved in 30% of Manchester United’s goals this season – a  great indication of how important Kagawa can be to United.

He has settled in very well so far but those that watched him in the Bundesliga know that he has so much more to give. If Manchester United can get Kagawa, van Persie and Rooney all playing the same tune, we will have one of the best attacking lineups in the league.

Attack, attack, attack 

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