Fred's standout moment vs Fulham shows why Van de Beek is still being shunned


Another day, another Manchester United win and yet another game with no sign of Donny van de Beek.

The Dutchman was once again an unused substitute in the Red Devils’ 2-1 victory over Fulham, and the 23-year-old has played just two minutes in the Premier League since the turn of the year.

While many criticised Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for his sparing use of the £40m summer signing initially, with the way things are going for his side at the moment nobody can point any accusatory fingers at the Norwegian manager.

And part of the reason for Van de Beek’s absence is due to the superb form of the likes of Paul Pogba and Fred, who are beginning to look undroppable.



Fred turned on the after-burners to beat his man on the left flank
Fred turned on the after-burners to beat his man on the left flank

Pogba’s impact in recent weeks has been spoken about in length, but Fred also deserves praise for the way in which he has continued to do the dirty work, adding much-needed steel and grit to United’s midfield to allow the more creative players to flourish.

And a passage of play late on against Fulham showed just how valuable the Brazilian star is to his side.



Fred then appeared to be fouled
Fred then appeared to be fouled

Fred was in possession of the ball on the left wing, and burst past Kenny Tetty looking to put a cross into the box.

He looked to be fouled as Tetty took him down, but the referee allowed play to continue.

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Rather than moaning or staying down, however, Fred jumped up to battle for the ball, eventually going on to win a throw for his team in a dangerous position.



But he quickly got to his feet to win the ball back
But he quickly got to his feet to win the ball back

It was a ten-second spell of play that could easily have been overlooked, but demonstrates perfectly the tenacious, combative nature which makes him such a crucial piece of United’s jigsaw.

It certainly makes life very difficult for Van de Beek, who must be beginning to wonder if he will ever be given a real opportunity to shine.

Perhaps this weekend’s FA Cup tie against Liverpool may see Solskjaer rotate and give him a rare start.



Donny van de Beek has barely featured recently
Donny van de Beek has barely featured recently

But unless he is given a consecutive run of games he may never be able to truly get into his stride at Old Trafford and produce the sort of superb showings he did on a regular basis for Ajax.

It is a dilemma which only Solskjaer will be able to solve.

But one thing is for certain: Fred does not look like losing his place in his first-choice 11 any time soon.





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