“I wasn’t surprised that we won,” explained the man from Belo Horizonte, Brazil’s sixth biggest city. “All the team played well. I played well. We knew it was going to be hard, but we are Manchester United. PSG knew that whatever happened in the first game, that we are still Manchester United. We have injuries but we are Manchester United. That is our name. Everybody knows us around the world. It was great that we got the win in a place like this.”
Fred has had a difficult first season in England so far, featuring in only 18 games and starting in 13, including the first three matches and two of the past three against Crystal Palace and PSG, the team he had an option of joining only to choose United instead.
On the available evidence so far, United fans might find it difficult to believe PSG and Manchester City also wanted him. He played only 81 league minutes of a possible 1,440 after his two starts against Everton and Bournemouth — United won both — and the Palace game last week.nike nfl jerseys for cheap
“It’s been a hard few months,” said the man who lists the “three R’s” — Robinho, Ronaldinho and Ronaldo — as his biggest influences. “I have not been playing. There has been a lot of things going on in my mind. Ole has helped me a lot. He had a lot of chats with me. [Michael Carrick] also speaks to me a lot. That brings me calm that things will turn around for me. They trust me and I feel that trust. And they were right to trust me because I showed tonight that I can play against one of the best teams in the world and play well.
“I’m very, very happy. My confidence is getting better.”
Fans saw him always wanting the ball against the French champions and nobody can say he and McTominay didn’t put in the hard yards on a slick Parc des Princes surface. Fred told ESPN he likes to “link the defence to the attack, to tackle, to win the ball back.” He looks to quickly pass forward, and while there are still errors in his game, more minutes should bring more confidence and better form.
With United in the last eight of the Champions League and the FA Cup, there will be no shortage of matches either. He’ll also be cut slack in his first season and there are enough football people around who think he’s got what it takes.
“When United signed him I thought it was a good move,” explains his compatriot and former United player Fabio da Silva, now at Nantes. “I’d watched him in the Champions League for Shakhtar and thought he would be perfect for United. He’s box to box, he runs everywhere. Darren Fletcher used to run everywhere.cheap nike nfl jerseys china
“Fred’s fast and he’s aggressive: two qualities which you have to have in English football. You have no chance without aggression in English football.