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Erik ten Hag should consider starting Fred in Saturday’s Manchester derby

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag should consider starting Fred in Saturday’s much-awaited derby against Manchester City at Old Trafford.

The Red Devils have been in fine form after the World Cup break and they recently registered an eighth successive win across all competitions.

The club beat Charlton Athletic by a 3-0 scoreline in the Carabao Cup quarter-final and it is now their best winning streak since January of 2019.

Hence, United should go into the Manchester derby full of confidence and it will be interesting to see what team the manager picks for the game.

In our opinion, Fred should be a starter in United’s midfield ahead of Christian Eriksen.

Casemiro has obviously been brilliant as the lone defensive midfielder while Eriksen and Bruno Fernandes have prospered in their creative midfield roles.

However, the club need more solidity in the centre of the park to deal with the Cityzens and Fred’s tenacity and work rate could be suited for the derby.

The Brazilian has had a mixed bag of performances this term, but he has fared impressively against City in the past, operating from a holding midfield position.

Fred, who made four key passes and won four duels against Charlton last night, could offer the right balance between attack and defence for the Red Devils.

He also tends to fare best when playing alongside Casemiro in a pivot. The €20 million-rated star was terrific against Spurs where he was paired with his compatriot.

Ten Hag will probably start Eriksen in the number eight role as he only made a cameo appearance yesterday.

However, we won’t be surprised if the Dutchman makes a tactical switch against Pep Guardiola’s side. The prospect of Fred starting the derby can’t be ruled out.

Stats from SofaScore.com and Transfermarkt.com