Man United over-reliant on Ibra, need more from Lingard - Ryan Giggs



Posted Monday, April 10, 2017 by ESPN

Manchester United rely too much on veteran striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, according to their most-decorated player, Ryan Giggs.

On a visit to Singapore this weekend with his former captain Gary Neville, Giggs said that the 35-year-old Swede needed more support from his teammates for Man United to be a real force in the Premier League.

"There's not a lot wrong [with the team]. The performances are good and defensively we look strong," Giggs told Today.

"It's just that concentration in [front of] goal and just that over-reliance, really, on Ibrahimovic.

"He's the centre-forward, but you need goals to come from everywhere, be it the wide men, midfielders, or even the defenders chipping in at set pieces."

Neville, who was Man United captain for five years, says he understands the Man United fans' frustration, but added that they shouldn't take it out on players like Jesse Lingard. The attacking midfielder's new four-year deal -- worth a reported £80,000-a-week -- was criticised by supporters as being too generous for a player who has yet to fully establish himself.

"Criticism of him is unjustified, he's done well and scored in two cup finals for United," Neville said. "He's done a very good job for Jose Mourinho, for United, gives his all in every single game; he loves the club, so I think that ultimately it's a deserved contract.

"I think maybe the fans' frustration sometimes is [from] the fact that they want to see a [Cristiano] Ronaldo or a Giggs all the time. You always need players like Jesse to support those types of players like Park [Ji-sung] because they balance off the talented players, do the work and fill in gaps."

Man United over-reliant on Ibra, need more from Lingard - Ryan Giggs
Zlatan Ibrahimovic needs more support from players like Jesse Lingard at Manchester United.

Giggs added that he hoped Lingard would be motivated by the new contract to score more, easing the load on Ibrahimovic.

"He's perhaps one of the players who needs to score more goals; as an attacking player you need to be heading for double figures and also 10, 12, 15 assists," said Giggs, who won 13 Premier League titles with Man United.

"Jesse's that type of player who can do that, now he needs to... concentrate on his football and make sure he puts the regular, consistent performances in."

Ibrahimovic's opening goal for Manchester United in their 3-0 victory over 10-man Sunderland on Sunday took his tally to 28 in all competitions this season, compared to only five goals in 30 games for Lingard.

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