At both full-back positions we have everything we could possibly require, in my opinion.
We have had years of cast offs from other Premier League teams or over-hyped players; we don’t have either of those right now. Every single full-back we have at the club is good enough. We have two experienced, solid defenders and two exciting, attacking full-backs. Baring a departure or player of exceptional quality becoming available, we don’t need to buy one this summer.
Cresswell has struggled for form recently, but haven’t most of our team? Towards the end of last season, he looked much like the player we first signed. He’s not the fastest but defensively he is more than up to the standard required to play in the Premier League.
He does contribute going forwards – we have seen on multiple occasions that he can strike a ball and his main attacking asset comes from crosses into the box. In the 2017/18 season, he registered seven assists while playing mostly out of position as a centre back.
He got his England call up for a reason and when in form he does everything you could ask of a full-back. It is with good reason we rejected an approach for him this summer.
Masuaku is more of a luxury player. It was a shock to see him glide past two opposition players the first time I saw him play, and with such ease. We have come accustomed to seeing someone like Guy Demel in that position, and I’m not sure why he played football at all.
Defensively, Masuaku seems to need a lot instruction to keep him aware, but he can make such a difference going forward in a way that Cresswell simply cannot. He receives a ball in a wide position deep in his own half, and without even breaking a sweat, skip past anyone in his way and suddenly, we are in possession in a dangerous area of the pitch.
If he could just improve his defensive side of his game, then Masuaku would be exactly the type of player Manuel Pellegrini would desire.
Zabaleta was one of the stand out performers in his first season with us, putting everything on the line every time he steps onto the pitch. The only thing he doesn’t have is pace, but he was never blessed with that in the first place, and more than made up for it with his experience.
The Argentine reads the game impeccably, even when up against a winger that you would expect to leave him chasing shadows
He even played a game in midfield in the 18/19 seasons and it was one of the better individual performances in that role all season for me. He is just the type of player you want your younger players to learn from and still has a fair bit left in the tank.
Fredericks started off life in the Premier League a little bit uncertain and struggled to keep up with the pace of the game, but after a lengthy injury last season, he came back looking more established and his overall reading of the game improved.
He is the quickest player we have, and on more than one occasion has managed to get back and make a challenge that no one else would have even been able to get near. As the season has gone on he has improved consistently.
The Englishman is at his most exciting when he bursts forward. We have only seen glimpses of his attacking ability, but he has demonstrated that he is an attacking full back, and provided he keeps improving, he will be at the club for a long time to come.
By Jack Farrell (@myWHUopinion)
[Feature picurefrom whufc.com]