Fred’s disappointing form at Manchester United this season has been brought into even sharper focus after a report emerged over why Jose Mourinho brought the Brazilian to Old Trafford.
The Brazilian midfielder was signed in a £52million deal from Shakhtar Donetsk in summer 2018, but has struggled to adapt and his displays hit a new nadir last Sunday as United slumped to a 1-0 defeat at Newcastle to leave them 12th in the table.
And Fred’s performance was subjected to plenty of criticism with BBC pundit Martin Keown tearing strips of the midfielder on Match of the Day 2, while Gary Neville was left to angrily point the finger at Ed Woodward and the United board.
And with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looking to strengthen both United’s midfield and attack when the transfer window opens in January, the midfielder could find himself with a renewed battle to claim a start in the side.
And United’s decision to sign Fred in the first place, meanwhile, has come under the microscope. That comes after claims made by The Athletic saying Mourinho landed Fred because he felt that, if he didn’t, United wouldn’t sign a midfielder at all that summer and signing the player was preferable to signing no-one at all.
The Red Devils refute this, however, insisting the Portuguese was adamant the midfielder would be a quality addition to the side.
Rather than hide away from his struggles, however, Fred has opted to face his critics head on and admits he needs to make a rapid improvement.
“They are within their rights, they’ve won many titles with this club. We have to shut up and work on the pitch,” Fred told Esporte Interativo.
“Some critics are pointless – but many can offer me lessons. I like to read what people are saying about my performances. With that, I can try to get better.”
On what it means to play for Man United, Fred insisted: “I do understand it.
“Every day when I arrive at the training ground, when I see those big letters with the name of the club, I pinch myself.
“So I know this club is gigantic. I like to read about its history, best players and historical moments.
“It hasn’t been great times for us — our rivals are winning titles and we’re not even in the Champions League. It makes our fans sad and I feel sad as well.
“This club deserves silverware and we’re going to fight to get better. We have to put United back in the place it should never have left.”