As we all know, David Moyes first season at Manchester United has not gone as he would have liked it at all. Sitting 7th in the league table at the time of writing and have just been eliminated from the Champions League by Bayern Munich, which was the club’s last chance of winning a trophy this season. One of the most disappointing things about Manchester United’s season is the continued poor performances from Marouane Fellaini, who joined David Moyes at Manchester United from Everton for £27.5 million in the summer transfer window.
Fellaini’s performances at Everton had earned him praise and David Moyes certainly believed that Fellaini would be the midfielder Manchester United have been craving for for years. Ever since his arrival though, he has struggled immensely in the middle of the park. He just seems to wander around the pitch and games pass him by very often. He does not get forward as much as he did when he was at Everton and he just does not bring an awful lot to the team in my opinion. Fellaini is 6,4 and I have never seen someone jump as little as he does. In the recent first leg of the Champions League Quarter Finals against Bayern Munich, he was terrible. When Man Utd were pumping balls into the box towards him he would always lose out. People like Philipp Lahm were beating him in the air. His arieal ability for a man as tall as him is quite shocking. It is not just his jumping I am unimpressed with though it is his overall performances. He does not change games the way he did at Everton, those long striding runs through the middle of the pitch are seen less and less. He usually plays in the middle of the park with Carrick and with Rooney usually playing just behind Van Persie up front. Maybe Moyes is not giving Fellaini the freedom he used to have at Everton and maybe that is a big factor in his performances and I guess the question would be then is why would David Moyes pay £27.5 million for a player he is going to use to play conservatively and not get the best of of him.
I think Manchester United as a whole have some very good players but they all cannot play in the same team together. You have Rooney playing just behind the striker which is arguably his best position but he can still do a very good job being the main striker but I think he is more effective playing just off the main man. You then have Van Persie who is an out and out striker who I think needs to play the majority of games to get into his stride, I do not think Van Persie is an instant impact player like Hernandez. The main problem I think David Moyes has though is where to play Juan Mata. His best position is the number 10 role, just behind the striker, but that is where Rooney is playing so Mata is often put out wide where his is so much less effective. Mata played in his preferred position in the recent win over Newcastle United 4-0, he scored two goals and had an assist as well so the proof is there, if it was ever needed, that Mata needs to be played in position. I guess the dilemma then is where to put Rooney and Van Persie, who would you rather have up front, Rooney or Van Persie? Personally, I would have Rooney playing upfront, I think he offers alot more all round team play than Van Persie does. Going back to the midfield problem Man Utd have with Fellaini, I think Manchester United is just too big for him, I think he struggles not being the main man like he was at Everton. Personally, in midfield I think Manchester United would do very well with Darren Fletcher in the middle of the park along with Micheal Carrick. They can sit and dictate the game, Carrick’s range of passing is very impressive sometimes and with Fletcher back from his illness he can sit in midfield and protect the back four perfectly. With the attacking four that Manchester United have, Rooney, Mata, Valencia and Kagawa, they can destroy teams and there is not need for box to box midfielders with the formation they are playing under David Moyes and that is why I think Fellaini is struggling a lot this season.
This season Moyes is being very loyal to Fellaini, which he has to be since he spent so much money on him. If Man Utd keep struggling going into next season I would not be surprised to see Fellaini dropped from the team and used sparingly since his performances have not deserved to keep him anywhere near the first team at Manchester United.