Former Germany international midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger has announced his retirement on his official Twitter page.
Having joined Manchester United in 2015, his spell at Old Trafford was a bust, just like so many of the players signed on Ed Woodward’s watch.
But why was that the case when he’d been so successful at Bayern Munich and at international level?
We’ve taken a closer look at a case of right player, wrong time as Schweinsteiger calls time on his illustrious career.
Wrong time in Schweinsteiger’s career
BBC reported at the time United were able to sign the German for the relatively reasonable sum of £14.4 million.
It seemed too good to be true; getting an experienced player in a position United badly need strengthening – and that proved to be the case.
Bayern Munich would never have let such an iconic player leave – on the cheap – if they weren’t convinced his best years were gone and could not be clawed back.
Pep Guardiola, then manager of Bayern, had decided that he couldn’t trust Schweinsteiger’s injury record and that he wasn’t able to operate at the level required.
United, just like with Alexis Sanchez, didn’t do their due diligence, with Woodward blinded by the opportunity to sign a big name on a deal the club could afford financially.
Essentially, they got a player way past his peak. If they’d got the Schweinsteiger of five years earlier; the combative, technically gifted competitor at the heart of Bayern and Germany’s success, he would have been the ideal anchor for Louis van Gaal’s midfield.
Wrong time in United’s history
United were a one-paced outfit under van Gaal at the time, and in dire need of some fresh blood and energy.
There was one away game against Arsenal in 2015, where Schweinsteiger, Michael Carrick and Wayne Rooney all played in the centre of the park and United’s lack of legs was simply exposed.
He was looked at as an experienced player brought into a dressing room which needed help to get back to the top.
But it was obvious then, and is even more so now, that United didn’t need expensive, quick fixes to try and quickly get back to the top of English football.
They needed energetic, younger players who would stick with the club for years and Schweinsteiger just wasn’t that man at the stage when he joined.
He conducted himself well throughout his frustrating time at Old Trafford, and left with warm wishes despite being paid handsomely, to do next to nothing and his professionalism and commitment is the reason why.
But it was a case of the player coming at the wrong stage of his career to a club which needed a different type of signing at that point.
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