Fred would never play for Man Utd again after PSG red card if Liverpool legend was in charge

  • Kobe Tong
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Manchester United's hopes in the Champions League now hang in the balance.

The Red Devils had the opportunity to book their place in the Round of 16 when they welcomed Paris Saint-Germain to Old Trafford on Wednesday night, but eventually fell short in a 3-1 defeat.

By the time the final whistle sounded, the French champions were looking pretty comfortable, but that wasn't a fair representation of a fixture that could easily have swung in United's favour.

Man Utd 1-3 PSG

Nevertheless, PSG taking the lead after just six minutes was a major powerplay and it came from the visitor's star performer with Neymar rifling a right-footed shot past David de Gea.

But the scores were level at half-time as Marcus Rashford tormented the Ligue 1 side for the umpteenth time, wrong-footing Keylor Navas after his shot pinged off Danilo Pereira.

The sides exchanged blows after the interval with Anthony Martial spurning a glorious opportunity, while Marquinos continued his run of scoring in the Champions League to put PSG 2-1 ahead.

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Fred sent off vs PSG

Then, in the dying moments, Neymar's tricks and flicks paid off with his wonderful piece of skill kickstarting a PSG move that concluded with him firing past the United goalkeeper.

However, I think we can all agree that the turning point in the game surrounding the discipline of United midfielder Fred, who was dismissed after yellow avoidable yellow cards.

In truth, Fred was lucky to avoid a straight red card in the first-half for moving his head towards Leandro Paredes, before a risky tackle on Ander Herrera eventually sealed his fate.

The Brazilian has since come in for criticism with fans bemoaning how his first caution reminded everyone of Nicolas Pepe and his second should never have been committed on a yellow card.

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Michael Owen's scathing assessment

But of all the parties to sink their knife into Fred on the back of his sending off, perhaps none of them have been more damning than that of former United and Liverpool striker Michael Owen.

"Mistakes all round really," the Ballon d'Or winner reflected on BT Sport when asked about Fred's behaviour and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's decision to keep him on the pitch.

"It was a red card. There wasn't much [in the headbutt] but come on, you're a grown man. You don't have to do these petulant little things to put your team at risk.

"If I was a manager and one of my players did this, just pure petulance, then he wouldn't play for me again. It's pathetic really."

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GIVEMESPORT's Kobe Tong says

A pretty scathing assessment from Owen, there's no doubt about it, but pure sensationalism from where I'm sitting.

As much as I respect you, Michael, footballers are human and I don't think you can wildly opine that one deviation from discipline should warrant him never playing for United again if you were in charge.

I also don't begrudge Solskjaer for keeping Fred, who pockets £120,000-a-week, on the pitch after the first yellow card seeing as he's been United's best midfielder in the Champions League this season.

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It's one of those instances where a player has simply messed up and as long as Solskjaer gives him a stern warning for his behaviour, I think it should be pretty easy to move on without much fanfare.

Besides, United need to direct all their attention to the final game-week clash with RB Leipzig and a game that will book their place in the Champions League second round if they can avoid defeat.

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