Jose Mourinho says recently that the absence of Marouane Fellaini would be "no problem" for the team as any other player will play in his stead.
While it may be a good strategy to keep up the morale of his players by such comments, the reality in fact is that the absence of Marouane Fellaini will be a big blow for him especially in the upcoming big game against Liverpool.
Marouane Fellaini strained his knee during the Belgium match against Bosnia-Herzegovina in the World Cup qualifier match. He limped off the field after an awkward fall. To add to the frustration of Mourinho, Belgium had already qualified for the World Cup 2018 in Russia.
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This is particularly unfortunate for Jose Mourinho because both the good players Paul Pogba and Michael Carrick are out of the team right now. Jose Mourinho will then have to make do with Matic and Herrera. The absence of Fellaini will be a big blow to the side especially for the upcoming match against Liverpool. This match is the start of a rather busy October for the Manchester United team.
This season, United has started with a blast, securing second position in the league so far and having a very tight competition with the first placer Manchester City who is ahead only due to goal differences, While they are way ahead of Liverpool with seven points leading.
It is not exactly clear as to when he will be back in the action. It could probably take weeks, meaning he will have to miss the Tottenham and Huddersfield games along with the Champions League game with Benfica.
So far, Fellaini's performance this season has been very good. He has scored four goals in his six appearances and the Manchester United team have won them all. And his one missing game had ended in a draw.
To give a complete picture, the stats alone tell us how important he is to the team. Considering the Premier League statistics, Manchester United won more games when he was in the side (win percentage with him in the side is 53 percent and win percentage without him in the side is 50 percent.) Also the team's scoring average was better when he was with the side (1.61 per game as compared to when he was not 1.52). When he was in the team, Man United collected more points- 1.83 as compared to 1.78.
The Manchester Team will especially need Fellaini for the big match against Liverpool, the time when not only the sports fans will be glued to their screens but also sports punters anxiously hoping for a particular result. So to get all updates and best predictions click here for online betting markets from William Hill.
Jose Mourinho is not known for praising individual players, yet he has praised Morouane Fellaini in the past. When asked about a rumor of Marouane moving to Galatasaray, he said that getting him was easier than getting Marouane. "He is too important for me", he said.
Jose Mourinho considers himself weaker without Fellaini, regardless whether he is on the bench or on the pitch. "I need him", Mourinho said for the Belgian player.
During the last four years at United, the word 'needed' has rarely been used for him. In fact, criticisms from his detractors often repeated the line that he wasn't a United player.
After his early struggles when he came to the United squad in 2013, Marouane Fellaini has now firmly entrenched himself as a successful player. Though he has had his fair share of criticisms levelled against him. Especially during the two years of Louis Van Gaal when he was often the subject of criticism among the fans. Just the last season, when the concession of a late penalty cost points for the United side, the fans were divided on the decision to pick him as a substitute against Tottenham.
However, his performances have improved over the years. Every passing season, Fellaini's number of appearances has increased. In his four years, he has earned three major honors for himself. Additionally, his contributions to the United's successes are no smaller. He has scored important goals in the semi-finals of EFL Cup and FA Cup.
And he has taken the roles very well in the United Side. Whether as a central midfielder, a second striker or an emergency forward, he has served the united side faithfully in all these positions.
After Paul Pogba got himself injured in the Champions League match against Basel, then it was Fellaini who quickly took the reins and scored with a towering header. Fellaini kept his starting place alongside Nemanja Matic and showed good performance against his former side Everton when United thrashed them with 4-0.
Although the team will miss Fellaini very much in the upcoming game, it is fair to say that United has many good players to make its matches very interesting. All the sports fans can hope for a very exciting and enjoyable match against the big team of Liverpool.