Marcos Rojo profile: Who is the £16m Manchester United signing?

A closer look at the defender who has arrived from Sporting Lisbon

Luke Shaw could be forgiven for feeling a mild sense of puzzlement following the arrival of Marcos Rojo.

That’s because Manchester United's third signing of the summer, who arrives as part of a deal seeing Luis Nani head on loan in the opposite direction, plays in Shaw’s position.

Rojo, a physically-imposing left-sided defender, played every second of Argentina’s nerve-shredding World Cup final defeat to Germany and went on to be named in the team of the tournament for Brazil 2014.

Read more: United target Di Maria is 'best player' at Real Madrid
United must work on defence - Usain Bolt
Reus could head to United

The now former Sporting Lisbon man is a natural left-back by trade but is almost as adept as a left-sided centre back. He can also be deployed further up the pitch as a winger – perhaps somewhere in between the three is in Louis van Gaal’s line of thinking, with the Dutchman known to be searching for wing-backs for his preferred 3-5-2 formation.

Video: The latest transfer news

The purported £16m fee is something of a surprise not because the 24-year-old Rojo is not any good. Rather, the size of the fee is puzzling because United have already laid out £30m this summer to make Luke Shaw the world’s most expensive teenager. Presumably Shaw has not been purchased to play a backup role – yet the reported price for Rojo is no snip, especially given that Van Gaal has other areas of more pressing need.

Van Gaal would still like to move for Real Madrid’s Angel di Maria and needs at least one more midfielder.

Statistically, however, Rojo is impressive and may well be worth his fee. At the recently-concluded World Cup he made 15 interceptions, won 17 tackles and completed 191 passes as part of a defensively-solid Argentina back line.

Rojo moved to Lisbon for £3.5m in July 2012 – the Portuguese club, then, stand to make a healthy profit on a player who came to them following a disappointing spell in Russia at Spartak Moscow.

 

For his performances under Alejandro Sabella in Brazil, Rojo was named in the Castrol Index team of the tournament – an honour not even his vastly more illustrious teammate Lionel Messi could achieve.

But the real question on Manchester United lips must be, do the club really need another pricey left-back – no matter his undoubted qualities?

Suggested Topics
News
More than 90 years of car history are coming to an end with the abolition of the paper car-tax disc
newsThis and other facts you never knew about the paper circle - completely obsolete today
Arts and Entertainment
Gay and OK: a scene from 'Pride'
filmsUS film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
News
people'I’d rather have Fred and Rose West quote my characters on childcare'
Life and Style
The new Windows 10 Start Menu
tech
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Hilary North's 'How My Life Has Changed', 2001
booksWell it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Sport
footballManchester City 1 Roma 1: Result leaves Premier League champions in danger of not progressing
Life and Style
Magic roundabouts: the gyratory system that has excited enthusiasts in Swindon
motoringJust who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Travel
Bruce Chatwin's novel 'On the Black Hill' was set at The Vision Farm
travelOne of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
News
Kim Jong Un gives field guidance during his inspection of the Korean People's Army (KPA) Naval Unit 167
newsSouth Korean reports suggest rumours of a coup were unfounded
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

Paris Fashion Week

Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?