Fred's display at Anfield is a positive in defeat
The defeat to Liverpool was tough to take, yet there are a handful of positives to extract from Sunday’s Premier League match at Anfield, including Fred's performance in central midfield.
With Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay both injured, the combative Brazilian has become an important player this season, required to step up for the team, and at the weekend he started his ninth consecutive match in all competitions.
There were no signs of tiredness, though, as Fred displayed his relentless work ethic against an all-action Liverpool side.
He covered more distance than any other player on the pitch, registering 11.67 km, with influential home captain Jordan Henderson a close second on 11.49 km.
Fred also registered two shots at goal and forced a decent save from Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson early in the second half, after positively driving up the pitch as his side fought for an equaliser.
Many supporters acknowledged Fred’s display with positive social media posts and, as you can read below, the former Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder and Brazil international was also praised by his manager and peers.
Nemanja Matic: “It’s great to play next to him. He played a great game. He always gives his best, fighting for the team, exactly what I try to do. We will continue to do our work - we’re working every day for this club and in three days, against Burnley, we have the chance to show that we are better than this result.”
Speaking on MUTV, our trio of pundits also offered praise for Fred's performance...
Louis Saha: “The midfield area is not an easy place to be at Anfield, because you have bodies around you all of the time and you have to be under pressure, but Fred managed to hold the ball, he managed to pass forward, be in the forward positions as well and I thought he combined well with Nemanja Matic at some points. He was the Fred that we want in that midfield.”
Ben Thornley: “I thought that, in Fred, we probably had the outstanding player on the park. He worked brilliantly defensively, and offensively he was the instigator of a lot that we did well.”
Danny Webber: “Fred was exceptional. He had all of the energy in the middle of the park, he took the game to them when he had the opportunity and he drove the ball forward whenever he could.”
Fred has so far featured in 27 of United's 32 matches across all competitions this season and, given the current situation with injuries in central midfield, he is almost certain to feature again in Wednesday's Premier League match against Burnley.
The manager is set to preview that game with a press conference, at a time to be confirmed.
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