With the new year fast approaching, Manchester United were brought crashing back down to earth as they drew with Leicester City at the King Power Stadium in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon.
Marcus Rashford opened the scoring following a sublime pass from Bruno Fernandes, before Brendan Rodgers’ side hit back shortly before the break after a sensational strike from Harvey Barnes, until Fernandes followed up his early assist with a fine finish to set the Red Devils on course for what seemed like certain victory.
But Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side shared the spoils with the Foxes after they were left frustrated by a late goal from Leicester striker Jamie Vardy.
But while Fernandes may receive most of the plaudits after he accumulated his 44th goal contribution in 44 games across all competitions for the club, Solskjaer will have surely been delighted with Fred’s performance in the middle of the park.
He was at the centre of nearly everything in the midfield, breaking up attacks on a whim and
As per SofaScore, the 27-year-old, who earns around £120,000-per-week at Old Trafford, won nine out of his 14 duels overall (64%), which was the most out of any other player on the pitch, and made five tackles and four interceptions.
Fred also took 89 touches of the ball, made one key pass and created one big chance, which shows that he contributed going forwards as well.
The Brazilian has recently been accused of being “lazy” by club legend and Sky Sports pundit Roy Keane but it’s fair to say that he looked like anything but lazy with his latest showing against Leicester.
If Solskjaer wanted Fred to defy his critics, then there’s no doubt he precisely did just that. 52 out of 68 passes (76%) is certainly nothing to sniff at.
We’re only halfway through the season, but if Fred can maintain his current run of form, then he could help to propel United towards their first piece of silverware since they won the Europa League under Jose Mourinho in 2017.