Jamie Carragher has issued an apology to Manchester United star Lisandro Martinez, after claiming the defender was too short for the Premier League.
It has been a hell of a journey for Martinez in his debut season in England, having moved from Ajax to follow Erik ten Hag to Old Trafford last summer.
At the time there were several pundits who weren’t impressed with the Argentina player’s physical stature and his ability to hack it in England.
United’s atrocious start to the season that saw them hit rock bottom certainly didn’t help with the thoughts that the 25-year-old wasn’t up to standard.
He has definitely turned things around though and has been absolutely integral to United getting into the top four, winning the Carabao Cup and reaching the FA Cup final.
Martinez also helped his national side win the World Cup back in December, and pundits have since had to start going back on their original thoughts.
On Monday night, Carragher and Gary Neville were in the Sky Sports studio handing out their end of season awards and causing controversy in typical style.
When it came to the ‘Surprise of the Season’ the former Liverpool defender picked Martinez and issued an apology for his earlier statements.
Premier League Biggest Surprise of the Year 🥇@Carra23 – Lisandro Martinez
🚨 Jamie Carragher issues an apology to Lisandro Martinez 🚨 pic.twitter.com/YfAlHnHUEH
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) May 22, 2023
“Here comes the apology, the retreat down the road,” Neville smirked in typical fashion.
After Carra’s previous comments were reiterated to them, the Liverpool legend said, “That’s not about Lisandro Martinez, that’s about any centre back coming to the Premier League who’s well under six foot.
“You’re thinking ‘he’s going to have a problem,’ but he hasn’t.
“Every player has weaknesses, whatever that may be. Whether it’s physically, technically, and the best players hide their weaknesses.
“We’ve all got them, no one’s the perfect player and I just looked at that and thought ‘how can you overcome that in the Premier League.’
“I mean I wasn’t the tallest centre back and I used to go into games worried I was going to get found out and bullied in the air. Sometimes you lose big challenges for big goals. I thought he’s two or three inches shorter than me.
“But I think, when you’re [Neville] talking about the role of Casemiro, I think it’s a massive drop off in the Manchester United team when Martinez isn’t in. Defensively but also his ability on the ball when playing out from the back.
“He’s a warrior, he’s a leader, and when you think of that spine of the team, him and Casemiro have made a huge difference.
“So, apologies Lisandro and all Man Utd fans, if you can stop tweeting me about Lisandro Martinez that would be great.”
Previously Carragher had said, “We should never judge managers or players too early, but I’m convinced this can’t work because the size of him playing in a back four.
“Maybe he could go left-back, maybe he could play in a back three, but in a back four, he cannot play there in the Premier League.”
He wasn’t the only one though, with Graeme Souness another pundit who had been very vocal for the former Defensa y Justicia player.
The Scotsman picked ‘Licha’ as one of his combined XI for United and Liverpool recently but still claimed he thinks the Argentine will be ‘found out.’