Manchester United have instructed Shinji Kagawa to adapt his game and become more of a threat up front, the Japan international has revealed.
The former Borussia Dortmund attacking midfielder starred for the German champions in the Bundesliga, netting 21 goals in 49 appearances, and while he has scored twice in six appearances for United, Kagawa revealed he has been instructed to be more dangerous by the Premier League club.
“They have told me not to face the goal with my back, but move my body so I have a short way to the goal,” Kagawa told reporters.
“(I must) shape my body so I am facing the stands. I have to face the goal or I won’t be a threat.”
The 23-year-old playmaker is an industrious worker, with Dortmund utilising his impressive work rate in order to play a high pressing game, yet Kagawa feels he needs to get stronger to cope with the Premier League: “I’ve realised that I need to limber up and strengthen my body trunk.”
Kagawa played out on the right for the first hour of United’s 3-0 away win at Newcastle United on Sunday, with his normal position behind the strikers being occupied by Wayne Rooney, who tweeted after the game: “Really enjoying my new midfield role, always involved”, suggesting Kagawa may have a challenge for his preferred role.
However, United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has praised his new signing, stating: “We’re very pleased with Shinji. Adapting to English football isn’t easy but bit by bit he’s getting down to that part.
“You always try and improve your players; that’s our job as coaches and hopefully we can improve Kagawa.”