Having returned to first team training late last month, Bastian Schweinsteiger has now said that he is now ready to feature for Manchester United once again if he is needed. Schweinsteiger was sent to train with the reserves before the start of the season by manager Jose Mourinho, having decided to stay at the club against Mourinho’s will, but he has been brought back to first team training and, as reported by Sky Sports, he is hoping for a return for first team action, and insists that he is ready.
“I’m trying to keep myself fit for the situation in which I am needed. Hopefully I will be given a chance. I look forward to training every day, and being able to train with the team. I don’t know if I will get a chance, but I hope so.
“I still feel fit at 32 and certainly want to play more years at the top-level and of course I want to win things. We won the FA Cup last year and that was also one of my aims. Of course it would be great to play for United in the Premier League and perhaps win it.
“If I am needed, I will give everything – I am ready.”
Schweinsteiger has yet to feature in any of United’s first team matches this season, and even when he made his return to first team training, Mourinho dismissed the notion that he is back in consideration for selection, and that his return to training is merely to boost the number of individuals present in training to do tactical work. It went to a point where, in United’s last quarterly report, his salary was accounted for as a “registrations’ impairment charge regarding a reduction in the carrying value of a player no longer considered to be a member of the first team playing squad.
Even today, Schweinsteiger was linked with a move to MLS side Chicago Fire. With all the signs pointing towards Schweinsteiger leaving United, it doesn’t seem like the German is willing to give up his place at Old Trafford any time soon. While his commitment to the club is commendable, if that is what it is, it’s important to look at this from the club’s perspective. Is he needed in the team?
His presence as an option in case of injuries or suspension is a plus, but other than that there’s no real reason why he should be in the team. The role he would occupy in the team is now being played to a high standard by Michael Carrick, and there are also Ander Herrera and Paul Pogba who have both made a string of quality performances. He would also need to go past Marouane Fellaini, whose physicality has made him an important part of the team, and Morgan Schneiderlin, who has been struggling for game time, but whose defensive capability means he’d have more to offer than Schweinsteiger. And there is also youngster Timothy Fosu-Mensah, who is still looking for his big break.
In short, United’s midfield is stacked with options, and while having Schweinsteiger around as another could prove useful, it doesn’t look like he has anything special to offer the team. If he wants to stay and fight for the team then that’s his choice, but it does look like a fight he has no chance of winning.