Fred produces yet another all-action midfield display for Manchester United

Manchester United’s Fred once again showed both the positives and negatives to his game in the 3-1 win against Brentford.

The Brazilian was reunited with his usual midfield partner Scott McTominay who had missed the 2-2 draw at Villa Park through suspension.

Ralf Rangnick’s Reds were not at the races in the first half at the Brentford Community Stadium and had David de Gea to thank for going into half-time level.

Playing against the newly-promoted side, United couldn’t deal with the intensity and pressure Thomas Frank’s side were putting us under.

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We kept on the giving the ball away and being caught dawdling in possession by the Bees.

Unlike his assured midfield partner McTominay, Fred looked a little overawed by the situation and the frantic tempo Brentford had set.

It is a big frustration in the Brazilian international’s game that he frequently has moments where he produces lacklustre, wayward or undercut passes, which puts us on the back foot and gives the opposition the opportunity to punish us on the counter attack.

But in the second half, just like the rest of his teammates, United’s number 17 showed what an asset he can be in Rangnick’s system.

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With McTominay playing the anchor role in a 4-3-3 formation, the 28-year-old has the licence to push up the pitch and press the opposition.

No player made more tackles than the Brazilian (5) in last night’s clash, according to WhoScored, and only midfield marvel McTominay completed more dribbles (6) than his partner.

It’s testament to Fred that even when he isn’t at his best technically, he will always run his socks off for the team.

But it was Fred’s vision that enabled Anthony Elanga to give the Reds a crucial lead against Brentford. That was one of two key passes from the former Shakhtar Donetsk man, only Bruno Fernandes (4) registered more in the United side.

Photo by Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images

With Cristiano Ronaldo coming deep, the Swedish youngster spotted the space and was picked out perfectly by Fred.

It was Fred’s third assist in as many matches, and he has directly been involved in six goals (five assists and one goal) since the start of December, no Manchester United player has been involved in more.

He finished the match with 85 touches, the most on the pitch. He also made two interceptions, two clearances and blocked one shot.

It was yet another busy performance from United’s little Brazilian, which saw him win nine duels.

Yes, Fred can be frustrating, but when he gets it right and is on song, he can be a huge asset to this Manchester United side.

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Passionate Football fan that completed a NCTJ-accredited Diploma in Multimedia Sports Journalism in 2016.