Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal could help the acrimonious situation between himself and the fans if he started to play Marouane Fellaini in his more natural position just behind the striker.
The under-fire manager has played the Belgium international in a holding midfield role in recent weeks, and whilst the former Everton star is an aerial threat, he often leaves something to be desired with his tackling.
The big Belgian has received a lot of criticism from the Old Trafford crowd but could win them around if he was played further up the pitch where he can have an influence in the attacking third.
He showed with his goal at Bournemouth last month that pumping the ball up to his chest can reap
goals, he just needs more opportunities to prove himself.
That being said, his header straight at Rob Elliot during the 3-3 away to Newcastle hasn’t done the 28-year-old any favours whatsoever. By putting chances like that away on a regular basis he can provide another dimension to United’s attacking play, which has often left plenty to desire so far this season.
It’s evident that he has moved into a more pressured environment, playing in front of 75,000 disgruntled fans every other week, but there must be a way that he can unlock the form that saw him score 11 goals in 31 Premier League appearances during his last season at Goodison Park.
Fellaini’s six goals in as many games for Belgium in 2015 shows that his goalscoring form for his
country hasn’t deteriorated and that finding the back of the net is still one of his strongest attributes.
But playing him out of position in front of the back four isn’t going to help endear him to Red Devils
It will be interesting to see if LVG invests this January and if so, which positions he opts to strengthen. The strikeforce is particularly lacking depth, but if the Dutchman has more players to choose from to play off of the front man then he may have the luxury of rotating Wayne Rooney and Anthony Martial in the number nine role.
Considering the amount of money that was splashed on Fellaini, it would be a shame for United to lose him so cheaply. If LVG is to persist with his selection then it would be better to at least see him playing in his strongest position, even if it does impact the style of football that his side play.
Manchester United fans: Where do you think Fellaini should be played? Have your say in the comment section below.