Football

Marouane Fellaini hopes for midfield role at Manchester United

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Marouane Fellaini has insisted that his best position remains as a defensive midfielder despite his success in a more advanced role for Manchester United this season.

The Belgium midfielder had been tipped to follow David Moyes out of Old Trafford when the manager was sacked in 2014.

He had struggled to settle into life as a Manchester United player and his prospects under the harsh rule of Louis van Gaal was less than good.

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However, against all odds Fellaini became a first-team regular for the Red Devils, albeit in a more advanced role than he is used to.

He finished to season with 26 Premier League appearances and six goals, but the £27.5m signing is adamant that he plays his best football as a defensive midfielder and is hoping to get a chance to prove it next season.

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Changing places

"Yes I see myself as a defensive midfielder, I feel comfortable playing there and if the manager decides he wants to play me there, I will," Fellaini told Goal.

"At the moment I play more up front, so it’s good for me.

"I score goals so in football it's important. I’m happy to play there and win some important games."

Future at Old Trafford

While Fellaini's future at Old Trafford is secure for the moment, Van Gaal's heavy spending plans means the situation could change very quickly.

Ilkay Gundogan, a defensive midfielder himself, has been heavily linked with a move to Manchester United this summer and his arrival will surely close the door on Fellaini's return to his favoured position.

The arrival of another attacking talent, such as Gareth Bale, could see Fellaini's role in the squad reduced to a minimum and leave him facing a season on the bench.

Ugly yet efficient

Fellaini regularly played upfront under Moyes whilst at Everton, but has always been seen as a last-ditch long ball option.

For Manchester United, whose fans demand good as well as effective football, his presence as an attacking player was surely a short-term option for Van Gaal.

However, his physical presence makes him an effective target man against even the meanest Premier League defensive lines and his value is sure to be retained by the pragmatic Dutchman.

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Topics:
Football
Marouane Fellaini
Premier League
Manchester United
Louis van Gaal

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