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Rio Ferdinand praises Michael Carrick's performance against Fenerbahce

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It has been something many ex-Manchester United players, as well as the fans, had been hoping to see for the last couple of months.

Much has been written about Paul Pogba's troubles after a tricky start to life back at Old Trafford and one of the possible solutions on offer has involved Michael Carrick.

The experienced central midfielder hasn't featured much under Jose Mourinho since signing a new contract at the club in the summer and until tonight his only previous start came in the League Cup against Northampton.

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But for the first time this season, Carrick was picked to start alongside the Red Devils' club record signing for the Europa League match against Fenerbahce.

And it paid dividends as Pogba and co. ran riot to comfortably defeat the Turkish side 4-1.

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The first half an hour didn't look too dissimilar from Man United's 0-0 draw with Liverpool on Monday but an extra bit of quality from Carrick was enough to turn the entire match in the home side's favour.

In a matter of seconds, his stunning long ball found Juan Mata in the opposing box who was subsequently fouled before Pogba stepped up to convert from the penalty spot.

FBL-EUR-C3-MAN UTD-FENERBAHCE

After that, it was plain sailing for Mourinho's men but Carrick remained at the heart of every positive move by dictating the tempo without barely breaking a sweat.

So good was the 35-year-old's performance he was even picked out by one of his former teammates as the star of the show.

Rio Ferdinand is more commonly spotted as a pundit for BT these days, however, his allegiance to the Red Devils remains as strong as it ever was.

Even before a ball was kicked in the second half, the ex-centre-back tweeted his delight at Carrick's performance.

Whether the veteran midfielder has done enough to earn a spot in Mourinho's starting XI against Chelsea on Sunday will be revealed in due time.

Despite Ander Herrera and Marouane Fellaini both in contention for a recall, Carrick has certainly done his chances of a run in the team no harm at all.

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Topics:
Paul Pogba
Football
Rio Ferdinand
Premier League
Manchester United
Michael Carrick
Europa League

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