Louis van Gaal has admitted he wanted to see Shinji Kagawa play in a central midfield role in the first two games on the pre-season tour but felt he played much better in his natural No.10 role.
Much has been said about the future of Kagawa at United this season and whether there is space for him in the squad given the plethora of No.10’s Van Gaal has at his disposal.
One such solution would be for Kagawa to drop into a deeper No.6 role and that’s clearly something Van Gaal is happy to experiment with.
“I know him from Borussia Dortmund and he played in the no.10 position,” Van Gaal said .
“I wanted to try him in the no.6 or no.8 position in our system in the first two matches, and then I also gave him a chance at no.10 because he wanted to play in that position. He did it much better than in the two matches before.”
Kagawa has had fleeting appearances in central midfield but not as part of a midfield three at United until the past couple of games under Van Gaal and although he does play better in his natural No.10 role, he’ll have to play precisely where Van Gaal tells him to.
The Japanese midfielder has all the attributes to make a very good central midfield player but United would certainly have to bring in a new midfielder to play alongside him to ensure the midfield wouldn’t become too exposed.
Kagawa has to take whatever chances he is given by Van Gaal if he is to have a career at United and if that means playing in central midfield, he’ll just have to adapt and make the position his own.