Former Manchester United midfielder Owen Hargreaves claims Andreas Pereira is not good enough to be a regular starter at Old Trafford.
Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has had to call upon Pereira more times this season than anyone imagined at the start of the campaign, even though he’d just been handed a new contract.
Injuries sustained by Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay have left the boss with few options, resulting in Pereira and Fred getting plenty of game time.
To his credit, Fred has grown into a better player who has vastly improved since his initial days at United. Pereira on the other hand just doesn’t offer enough.
After watching Pereira in Thursday’s 1-1 Europa League round-of-32 first-leg draw at Club Brugge, Hargreaves makes it clear he doesn’t think the Brazil international is of the quality United need to get back to the top.
“He’s had the second most appearances for Manchester United this season,” Hargreaves said on BT Sport (via GOAL).
“He shouldn’t be in the position he’s in right now because Manchester United really in the past have always had players, you think of Paul Scholes and Roy Keane.
“Right now the load is being put on these young guys and [Marcus] Rashford and [Anthony] Martial and Mason Greenwood and Pereira.
“And really, they’re going to be really good squad players for Manchester United but if Manchester United want to win the Champions League and win the Premier League, I think Pereira is going to be a good squad player.”
Hargreaves added: “He’s played multiple positions this season. He spoke about goals there but I think he’s only got one [this season].
“At times he’s played as a 10, at times he’s played wide, today he’s almost played as a sitter.
“I think it’s difficult for any young player coming into a team that’s struggling playing multiple positions.
“So I think he’s done well, he’s had a breakthrough season but to expect him to get 15 goals, that’s unrealistic right now.”
Can’t help but agree with Hargreaves; Pereira is a player I’ve watched come through the youth teams and back then he appeared to have a real creative spark to his game. Obviously he’s playing at a higher standard now and it looks like he’s just not cut out to be a United player.
Squad player? Maybe. We need to rebuild and it’s good that he’s getting minutes now, but next season that shouldn’t be the case. Not the minutes he’s been getting this term.