Butcher made the likes of Carragher swallow their grammar

“I’m convinced there’s no way it’s going to work. He’s 1.75m and plays in a four-man defence,” Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher said of Lisandro Martinez after Manchester United’s humiliating 4-0 loss to Brentford in August.

“He can’t play in the Premier League. Every United opponent has to push them through him,” added the Liverpool legend.

But since then, Martinez has made Carra swallow his grammar, inspiring United’s revival under Erik ten Hag with a string of superb performances alongside Raphael Varane.

The Amsterdam butcher has now emphatically shown why a hefty £46.5 million was paid to sign him from Ajax. And his aggressive style of play and constant self-giving reflects perfectly not only on United’s defense, but on the whole team.

“He is a warrior and I think the fans will admire him. He has an attitude and a fighting spirit,” said Ten Hag after signing the player.

His words have been vindicated, but Martinez is about to face his toughest test yet in a Devils shirt, one that could prove defining for his Old Trafford career.

The question now is, will the Argentinian international be able to be as effective in the absence of the injured Varane, with whom they fit like stones?

The Frenchman left the field with an injury in the derby against Chelsea and is very likely to miss his team’s games before the World Cup, as well as the World Cup itself.

On this occasion, Rio Ferdinand said: “Martinez has been top this season, but Varane gives the team something different. It’s about that speed, that experience and fitness that he has. I think it will be a huge loss. The team needs an hour sooner than the two of them (Varane and Martinez – ex) together again. You can see they are making us a different team, it’s that simple.”

Victor Lindelof replaced Varane at Stamford Bridge and club captain Harry Maguire returned from his own hamstring problem in the Europa League clash against Sheriff last Thursday.

We recall that the English international had lost his place precisely at the expense of Martinez, and Ten Haag had not risked playing with the two of them even once after the loss to Brentford. But on Sunday against West Ham they partnered for a whole game and the rating is good. Working together can definitely happen.

After the 1-2 draw against Brighton in the first round, Harry said he and Martinez were in “different categories” given the difference in size. But in truth, it was Maguire’s clumsy play and errors that put Martinez under immense pressure. However, the Argentine proves from game to game that his height does not prevent him from shining even in a championship like the Premier League.

What’s more, Lisandro is becoming a fan favorite and is beginning to forge a rapport with supporters that few have managed since the Sir Alex Ferguson era.

Do you remember how he celebrated the equalizer against Chelsea? He threw himself into the agitation of the guests and fell into the arms of a jubilant fan. “Brother, I don’t know you personally, but we are in the same boat. We are fighting to the end,” he later wrote on social networks.

Chants of “Argentina, Argentina!” and they were heard during the victory over Tottenham, which touched the football player.

“Honestly, it’s something very emotional for me. I’m at one of the best clubs in the world. This stadium, the atmosphere… Everything is amazing. When I heard the fans singing, I was about to cry.”

The 24-year-old Kasapin’s passion and will to win has rubbed off on his teammates, and fans are united in a way they haven’t been in nearly a decade.

The ball is now back in Maguire’s court, who must meet the standards set by Martinez, otherwise much of the work done in recent months will go to waste.

After Sunday’s win over the Hammers, United are now just a point off the top four and a game in hand over Newcastle.

Ten Haag took a risk with the release of center pair Lisandro and Maguire and his decision turned out to be the right one.

The Argentine definitely deserves to be a starter at the heart of the Red Devils’ defence, and Carragher is better off keeping quiet at this stage.