football

‘He is not the problem’ – John Barnes says he he feels sorry for Man Utd star Fred


Fred netted the winner in Manchester United’s 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace (Picture: Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images)

Liverpool legend John Barnes says he ‘feels sorry’ for Manchester United star Fred because he can’t do all the running and pressing required by himself.

Under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer United were heavily criticised for their performances in the latter months of his tenure and in particular midfield duo Fred and Scott McTominay came under fire.

Unlike the likes of Liverpool, United’s play under the Norwegian wasn’t built on pressing, which also saw attacking players like Cristiano Ronaldo called into question.

With Ralf Rangnick now at the helm on an interim basis, United’s forwards will be expected to run more and Barnes believes that will relieve some of the pressure on Fred, who scored in Rangnick’s first game on Sunday, a 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace.

‘I feel sorry for Fred. Running and pressing is his game but he can’t do it by himself,’ he told BonusCodeBets.

‘The fact that other players were pressing with him meant that he was able to prove his worth. He [Fred] did not do anything differently, he always presses but if he does it alone, it means he gets isolated alongside Scott McTominay, and that is what was happening.

Fred could enjoy a better times under Ralf Rangnick (Picture: Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

‘Those two were getting isolated, which is why Manchester United have been conceding goals and losing matches. Now that everyone else was doing it, we can see the value that Fred actually brings.

‘I’ve always liked Fred and he has not been the problem at Man United, it’s been the other four strikers that have been playing, whatever combination of Ronaldo, Rashford, Fernandes and Greenwood.

‘It is the strikers working with Fred and McTominay that need to supplement them with attacking pressure.

‘It doesn’t matter who you are, even Jordan Henderson and Fabinho, you cannot do what you do if the front three are not working hard to press and close down.

‘That is why Liverpool are a much more balanced team. I have never had an issue with Fred and McTominay nor the defence because they need everyone in the team to be working hard and that is what they did against Crystal Palace.’

United are next in action tonight (Wednesday) when they face Young Boys in their final Champions League group match.


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