Manchester United star Marouane Fellaini was labelled a flop after a disastrous first season at Old Trafford, but is now ready to prove his worth in this campaign, Daily Mail reports.
The towering Belgian became a scapegoat in the Red Devils’ fall from grace last year alongside manager David Moyes, who both arrived from Everton at the beginning of the 2013/2014 season.
The pressure was so intense Fellaini needed to call his family for emotional support when he wasn’t able to perform to his usual high standards.
However the 26-year-old has started in United’s last three games under new manager Louis van Gaal and has looked much like the impressive midfielder during his Everton days.
Prompted whether he felt like a ‘scapegoat’ last season, he replied: “Yes, a little bit.
“That is a difficult question. It is difficult to answer that. I agree last season was tough.
“There was a new manager and it was difficult for all the players.
“My family helped me through it. But I didn’t lose faith in myself. In football you have to be strong in the head. The mentality is important and I do have this quality so I can keep going.”
Fellaini also took part in Belgium’s run to the World Cup quarterfinals, and he felt that helped restore his confidence ahead of the current campaign.
“I was also in the national team for Belgium at the World Cup and I played well and the team also played well,’ he said. “For my confidence that was important.
“I came back after the summer confident. The manager said to me I would have to fight if I wanted to play. I did fight and trained hard and that was it. When I got my chance I tried to show myself and tried to do my best.
“Last season was a difficult season for me. The World Cup helped me a lot. The manager of the national team and the players helped me and it was a great experience for everybody.”