Described as Manchester United’s number one transfer target by the Mirror, Mats Hummels recent comments regarding his on-going knee issues will be of great concern at Old Trafford.
Hummels has been linked with a move to the Reds ever since Louis van Gaal agreed to take over from the ousted David Moyes at the end of the 2013/14 campaign.
The World Cup winning defender’s signature will be one of the most sought after in the game should he decide to depart Signal Iduna Park.
However, his lengthy back catalogue of injuries will doubtless be a cause for reticence for any side considering parting with what will inevitably be a vast sum for his services.
According to transfermarkt.com Hummels has suffered 13 separate incidences of injury or illness (one bought of flu) since the beginning of the 2012/13 campaign alone.
Speaking at Borussia Dortmund’s winter training camp in La Manga the 26-year-old admitted he had been suffering with a knee complaint since his Brazilian high-watermark, telling reporters:
“The matches in which I felt fit and was pain-free can be counted on the fingers of one hand,”
“The problems after the World Cup were more in my knee than my head.”
United have shown in the past that on-going injury concerns have been enough to see them pull out of major transfer moves.
Last summer a deal to bring Juventus’ Arturo Vidal to Old Trafford was mothballed due to fears over the Chilean’s knee-problems.
Nor is Hummels the sole player strongly linked to the Reds to have suffered from similar injuries.
Roma’s Kevin Strootman, a Van Gaal teacher’s pet since the latter’s days in charge of the Netherlands national side, is playing his way back slowly after a cruciate ligament mishap.
Next up in the Premier League for the Red Devils is a trip to QPR where they are as short as 67/100 to pouch maximum points.