Michael Carrick has been the the unsung hero in Manchester United's midfield

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With a midfield consisting of attacking threats such as Angel Di Maria, Juan Mata, Ander Herrera and Adnan Januzaj it becomes difficult for the more defensive minded players to receive the praise they deserve.

Michael Carrick has been an integral part of the Manchester United midfield over past seasons and it seems Van Gaal's men have been better off since he returned in that anchor man position in front of the back four.

The 33-year-old's future at Old Trafford wasn't looking so bright following the arrival of Dutch international Daley Blind, which came alongside an injury that ruled him out for the first nine games of the season.

Since then, the former Spurs man has started four games against Crystal Palace, Arsenal, Hull City and Stoke City - the Reds won each and every one of those matches.

Carrick's presence brings a sense of calmness and cohesiveness to way the team plays. He keeps thing simple, starts the moves, and then allows the more forward thinking players to do the rest.

The ease with which he controls the tempo of a game is something to admire and something that Italy star Andrea Pirlo receives the utmost praise for on a regular basis - there needs to be more parity in the praise.

A five-time Premier League winner, Carrick also has superb defensive instinct and his ability to read the game makes him an indispensable player to have sit in front of Louis van Gaal's back four.

Not Enough Plaudits

In the 2012/13 season the defensive midfielder did receive some recognition when he was voted the player of the season by his team mates, the best award to win in many peoples eyes.

And the England international deserves to be rewarded for his fine performances with a bumper new deal to keep him at the club for at least another season.

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England Football
Louis van Gaal
Michael Carrick
Manchester United
Premier League

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