Wednesday , January 20 2021

Manchester United’s Van de Beek rejoices in deeper role in Pogba’s absence



Reuters: With a rare start to Manchester United’s 4-1 Champions League win over Istanbul Basaksehir on Tuesday, Dutch midfielder Donnie van de Beek was pleased with his performance after impressing in a deeper role in the absence of Paul Pogba.

Van de Beek, signed by Ajax Amsterdam for reported 35 35m (46 46m) in September, has been placed at United’s midfield base behind Bruno Fernandez, instead of moving forward to slot 10.

Despite the position switch, the 23-year-old looked comfortable for 90 minutes as United secured a win to keep them on track to advance to the knockout stages.

“It was really good. In some games I play number 10, sometimes the coach needs me in the control position, that’s good for me. Sometimes I play in that position at Ajax, so it’s good,” Van de Beek told MUTV.

“I think it is a good reaction from the away field, 4-1 at home, you can be happy. The first half was really good, especially the first 30 minutes, we played really good football, we scored really nice goals.

“We lost too many balls in the second half, we gave them a few chances, but in the last five minutes we control the game again and make a nice (fourth) goal.”

French midfielder Pogba was not in the squad, and manager Ole Gunnar Solsjaer confirmed that he was out due to injury.

“His ankle is swollen,” Solskjaer said. “We trained yesterday, but he did not feel right. This morning it was just a confirmation that he could not play.”

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(Report by Rohit Nair in Bengaluru; Edited by Peter Rutherford)


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