When a club such as Atletico Madrid make that incredible run and with much doubt, and win a league title, theres one thing that usually follows. That team is certain to get broken up into pieces as players try to turn their 15 seconds of fame for a big payday. We’ve seen it recently with Borussia Dortmund in Germany.
Which can become a dangerous game for the buyer.
The latest player that has asked for his transfer papers is central defender Joao Miranda. A lanky 29 year old from Brazil. Miranda supposedly has told his agent he wants out, and has confirmed he is in talks with one English club, which is rumoured to be Manchester United.
Manchester United is in a desperate spot for a central defender after veterans Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic both have left the club. Miranda, according to reports, would cost around 30 million Euros.
But, there’s theres a lot of uncertainty about Miranda. First, he was partnered up with Diego Godin, a elite defender on Madrid. Neither Chris Smalling nor Phil Jones are in the class of Godin. Two, while he’s been solid for Atletico since his arrival, last season blows any other season away in terms of productivity. Three, he came from Sao Paulo to Madrid on a free-transfer, meaning not many valued him very highly in 2011. Not to say that players are not over-looked, but one has to wonder if this is a case of Miranda being a beneficial of the Diego Simeone system?
Simeone is a great manager with a very unique coaching style. He’s a “players” coach. Very motivational and gets the best out of his players because players would “go through a wall” for Simeone. Miranda did win the La Liga defender of the year this past season, however, one aspect of his game that fans keep awing about is how Miranda contained Lional Messi to no goals in 6 matches this past year. The truth is, that Simeone used three players, Miranda, Godin and Felipe Luis to blanked Messi at all times. A tactic to control and frustrate Barcelona’s best player, which clearly worked.
To return back to the Borussia Dortmund similarities, to a certain degree, Miranda reminds me of Felipe Santana. He also came from Brazil and was a very valuable player to the Dortmund team, especially in the season the club went on to the Champions League final. Santana was a heart and soul player on that Dortmund team, as Miranda is, but wanted to leave, for a bigger payday and to get more opportunity to play regularly. He joined Schlake 04. He has since struggled since his move. Miranda is a better overall player then Santana, but Santana didn’t cost Schalke 04 30 million Euros either.
Miranda is 29. His time at the highest of levels is limited. Despite his best season as a professional and helping his Atletico to a league title and European Cup finalist, he was still not named to the Brazilian national team for the World Cup. After learning of his World Cup snub, Miranda retired from the national team. Quitting when not getting your way isn’t a characteristic you’re looking for in a player. He would be 33 by the time the 2018 World Cup rolls around, so his chances for that were very slim, but he would only be 31 for the 2016 Copa America. Three defenders on the current World Cup team are 31 or older now, so Miranda’s chances to make that 2016 team were very real, if his game continues to impress.
It would be safer for a club with good depth at the position to bring him in. If it doesn’t work out as a starter, he can remain as a depth player. At his current age, going into a rebuilding project, after just being in one with Atletico, wouldn’t be the best for his morale. Going straight to a winner would be the best move for Miranda. And a safer route for Manchester United as they look to fix up that central defence, because not everything you touch will turn into gold.