Erik ten Hag has given a positive verdict on Facundo Pellistri‘s performance for Manchester United against Real Betis.
Pellistri, 21, was making his first ever start for Manchester United and featured for all 90 minutes.
His first half effort led to United hitting the post, and the Uruguayan had 53 touches in all, working hard defensively to make five ball recoveries.
The only sour note on his night was an unjust yellow card, but even this won’t take away a happy first start for the winger with United winning 1-0.
Erik ten Hag verdict on Pellistri
Manager Erik ten Hag explained after the game he was very pleased with the youngster’s performance.
Ten Hag told BT Sport in his post-game interview: “For Facundo, he’s great to come in, he had some good moments, he has a good performance in training but a game is different.
“In the start, he has to come in but you saw after some minutes he had belief and he had some really good actions, he definitely did his job.
“I was really pleased with his performance.”
Ten Hag’s comments will give Pellistri confidence. He is right that the winger has had to earn his opportunity, and it was a debut the youngster will cherish when he looks back at it.
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With Alejandro Garnacho out injured, United need the extra depth in wide areas, which Pellistri can provide.
It was way back in October 2020 that Pellistri signed for United. He then spent 18 months on loan at La Liga side Alaves, and has had to wait patiently for his opportunity.
He has gradually been impressing Erik ten Hag with a series of substitute appearances, and with Antony out with illness, his chance finally came.
Pellistri’s display was praised by pundits on BT Sport too. He might just have done enough to keep his place for Sunday’s FA Cup quarter-final.