It is no secret that Manchester United have lacked a certain tenacity in their midfield area. There are many words that can be used to describe the Reds' midfield such as creative, controlling and energetic - due to the good mix of players that they have, but they have also been criticised as being soft at times.
Old Trafford has yet to see a player in the mold of Roy Keane ever since his departure from the club and according to the manager, United do not need a combative, ball-winning, box-to-box player. Given that they are clear by 13 points at the top of the Premier League, perhaps there is some truth to that statement?
However, United have come up short against more physical teams in the EPL and the Champions League. Enter Marouane Fellaini - Everton's colossal central midfielder.
The Belgian international is an imposing player who has been a key figure for Everton for the past couple of seasons. This is turning out to be his best season yet with 11 goals in 26 league appearances.
He makes about 2.3 tackles and 1.2 interceptions per game. He also makes an average of 1.2 key passes, 51.3 regular passes per match and has a 78.6% pass completion rate. These are some pretty impressive stats but players are not based on statistics alone. The bite he brings to his team affects his opponents and influences his teammates.
He is absolutely fantastic in aerial duels in terms of winning a header or receiving the first ball from a goal kick. These are key attributes in retaining possession that United's midfield and attacking players are not well known for. They may be good in the air but they do not come close to Fellaini's aerial prowess.
As a defensive midfielder he is good in making tackles and contributing defensively for his team. His energy to battle opponents for the ball and win it for his team makes him a great asset. Here's the twist.
Besides defending well, Fellaini is also strong going forward and finishing for his team. His goal tally speaks for itself and United would do well to add a goalscoring midfielder to the team.
With his energy, power and decent pace, Fellaini can be an instrumental player for United going forward as well as helping out at the back. His box-to-box role would provide some measure of cover for the defence as well as add another legitimate attacking threat from the middle. He has also proven himself in the EPL and would have no problems adapting to life at Manchester. Fellaini has been a key figure for Everton as they look to push for a spot in Europe.
This is one man who could add a sense of solidity which has been lacking in the United midfield for quite some time and fans would love to see a physically dominant and imposing figure at Old Trafford. With a reported release clause of up to £22 million in his contract, the 25-year-old would make an excellent investment for the Red Devils.
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