It seems like a less obvious virtue in the game but an infectious personality can be a great quality in professional football.
As well as technical skill on the park it’s clearly important that there are players who can unify squads, keep them happy and generate team spirit. These sorts of players usually go on to become leaders.
Manchester United have been lucky (or wise) enough to have lots of these sorts of players over the years and you have to say that Patrice Evra is a great example in the current team. Perhaps this, as much as anything else, is why Manchester United wanted to extend the brilliant Frenchman’s stay.
Evra has been a great spokesman but also someone who has led by example during Manchester United’s most successful period in their history.
Manchester United will benefit from his personality again next season but Louis van Gaal seems to have his own Evra in the Dutch national squad.
Bruno Martins Indi is apparently a man of youth and exuberance. But, at the age of 22, he also engenders team spirit and happiness with his infectious personality.
Martins Indi, who was born in the shadow of Benfica’s Estádio da Luz to a Portuguese mother and a Guinean father and then moved to Rotterdam at an early age, is an endearing figure, capable of raising a smile from the hardest coach. He famously elicited the line – “I love you, Bruno” – from none other than Van Gaal.
“I think I click very well with Van Gaal. But I do it without sucking up to him, honest!” Bruno says in an interview that often feels like having a chat with a lively 10-year-old rather than a 22-year-old professional footballer.
LvG is of course far too wily a campaigner to be seduced by the the charms of a football player who doesn’t have the technical skills to compete with the best.
But as a solid and mobile young centre back or left full-back this guy also looks like he has the quality to go with the charisma.
Of all the players that Louis wants to bring into the Manchester United squad this summer it may be safe to assume that Martins Indi is towards the top of the list.
Let’s see him in action. Manchester United fans would BMI add quality to the defence?