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Is Marouane Fellaini really good enough for Manchester United?

It seemed a real abashment that following a very good display against one of the best teams on the planet, all anybody felt the need to talk about was the substandard performance that Marouane Fellaini put in last night.

At six feet and four inches with the addition of a large afro, it would seem impossible that someone could be anonymous on a football pitch; however I was duly proved wrong as the £27 million pound midfielder put in a show of such mediocrity and feverishness against Bayern Munich that a Spanish paper actually didn’t render him worthy of a rating. It felt a little bit like sweet irony that when every other player was playing with such competence and know-how that Fellaini was just like he has been all season, it was almost like a reality check in a sense. It showed that Manchester United still had universal issues to deal with, which was sad because for a brief moment all the lamenting and anger I had experienced since August flew out the window and I was rehabilitated with a feeling a pride and assurance. But sadly, Fellaini’s performance put everything back into perspective.


In a game that was spent mostly without the ball, it was important for Manchester United to not squander any possession in the middle of the park and maintain a sturdy defensive shape which was also capable of counterattacking productively. This was something that was systematized successfully by David Moyes and even though the German visitors made about 400 more passes than United, the home team were worthy of a 1-0 win. This arguably would have happened should it have crossed Fellaini’s mind to track the run of Bastian Schweinstieger (who then netted Bayern’s equaliser) as someone who always backs the players regardless of how poor they are it was really sad to hear ironic jeers from the United fans when he finally won a header or successfully made a tackle. Although I certainly disapprove of it, I partly understand it. Nobody can dispute how out of place this strangely built man was.

So, if he’s that bad, why on earth did Manchester United buy him?

Upon the departure of Scholes, it was imperative that United recruited somebody swiftly that was able to play in that defensive midfield position at a good level, not Scholes level (that’s impossible) but still a decent level. The thinking was that it was important to bring in somebody who could tackle hard, play the simple pass but also that defence splitting pass, win headers, shoot with venom and accuracy but more importantly devote themselves to the cause every time he steps on a football pitch. The purchase of Fellaini was that attempt, unfortunately it didn’t have the desired affect: He wasn’t brought in swiftly for a start; he was signed 3 games into the season. His tackling has generally been sheepish, his work rate is more or less nonexistent and I think it’s probably best if I don’t mention his shooting. Everything has gone against him as well, a wrist operation, the demise of a squad as a whole and most importantly not being played in his favourite position has severely inhibited his progress at United.

Fellaini Manchester United

Despite all this negativity, I do believe it’s important to remain supportive of Fellaini. Coming to United at this period of time is difficult not just for David Moyes but also any player. His bullishness and ferociousness is enough to scare the living daylights out of any team, his ability will eventually shine through. Just look at Jordan Henderson of Liverpool, another player who came to a big club and went straight under the radar for several years is now instrumental in every success Liverpool have this season. It won’t happen overnight, but a player with such experience and ability will eventually adjust to life in Manchester and soon become a useful asset for Manchester United.

What are your thoughts on Marouane Fellani? Comment in the section below.

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By Leo Nieboer

Mourning the loss of Danny Welbeck

11 replies on “Is Marouane Fellaini really good enough for Manchester United? ”

No no hes not never will be . Hes probly are worst ever signing . He may of been considered ok in the 70s he slow clumsy rubbish

Why on earth did we not play Fletcher.. a really good holding player who can pass the ball. Utd basically played with 10 men

I think if we are talking about the highest level of European football then Fellaini is probably not good enough. I don’t believe he is mobile or quick enough. If you want to play quick fluid football then Fellaini isn’t going to help. The lad was ultimately a last minuet panic signing by Moyes, in a very difficult transfer window. Fellaini is not worth the £27 million we spent, but that wasn’t his fault.

I do see him staying with Man Utd but in no more than a luxury squad player going forward. In fact Moyes and his staff will need to make him a bit versatile so he could play at centre back when required. We see how Mascherano fills in at the back for Barcelona and Javi Martinez does the same for Bayern Munich. If Felliani wants to be valuable then he would do well do follow those two.

“I think if we are talking about the highest level…” of non-league football, then Fellaini is probably not good enough.

He cannot tackle.

He won 17% of his aerial duels, despite being 6ft 4ins. That’s because he doesn’t jump.

He doesn’t track back – e.g. Schweinsteiger’s goal.

He doesn’t sprint.

He doesn’t think quickly enough e.g. last night in the 2nd half, facing his own goal outside the penalty area, a quick break was on – he had not got a clue who to pass to – Paul Scholes would swivel, know where everyone was and launch e perfect weighted pass. Fairlady? Passed it back to the back four, a quick counter-attack lost.

Even Tom Cleverly, on his worst of days, is actually better than that.

BUT – Fairlady represents the under-dog attitude of St Moyes that means we will NEVER be top while he is in charge. I suggest fans read this article :

it is very clever and actually quotes sports psychologists to demonstrate how Moyes is utterly undermining the confidence of all of our championship-winning players.

I personally LOVED the way (10 of) our players played their hearts out – strange that they can do it in Europe when everyone in Europe is watching but can’t be motivated by their all-conquering manager…. but they gave me something to be proud of – which is more than I can say for Fairlady or St Moyes.

And – Vidic and Kagawa – IMHO our best players last night, closely followed by Danny Welbeck and Rooney – and Moyes will have got rid of them both by next season. Our worst player by a mile – keeping Cleverly and Fletcher out of the side – Moyes’ favourite – Fairlady. We’re not used to the world being upside-down but if Moyes stays we will have to get used to it – he lives underneath the surface as a forever-stuck-underneath-man.

People need to give him tym, too many have been on his case since day one. Yes he cost 27m…not his fault, was he brought as our new creative midfielder? No coz we missed out on all our creative targets….

All this his rubbish his this his that…we’re 7th….FACT majority of the squads been rubbish not just him.

Last night, other then the goal what did Bayern centre midfielders do to hurt us? Don’t recall much…that was down to Carrick, Giggs and fellaini…

His didn’t pass the ball well? Did anyone? We had 67% accuracy in whole game…wasn’t just his fault…don’t hear much complaints about rio hitting it long to no one or Rooney flicking round the corner instead of holding the ball

Just get behind him!!!!

Well said mate.

We did not create much, and he isnt out creative midfielder.
Attacking wise he didnt aid the team, but no one is drawing the line how tidy was our defence, we closed gaps pretty well.

I think their goal was beautifully orchestrated.

Fellaini is not up to United standard in any area.

But he is Moyes’ 27 mill boy and he will have a future at United whereas Kagawa and Chicharito will not.

Welcome to the nightmare.

The thing is he was a threat at Everton,in a certain position.Dont think anyone really knows if he will come good.For example for set peices at both ends,he has no excuse.Should have got a header or two by now,look at the size of him.Is Moyes just waiting for him to come good,is he getting told to get his act together.No excuses on that one.Is,nt he worth 27+mill,what the heck is happening with the motly Collection all hiding behind the aura of United.

Cannot defend. Doesn’t know how to move sideways. Lazy tracking skills. No man-marking. Slow and clumsy. Looks to be afraid of the ball. No confidence?
The list goes on and on…

How can anyone judge a player in such a short time? Apart from rvp how many players over the past 8 years have made an immediate impact? So what if he came with a hefty price tag, that’s not his fault is it? Give him a chance, i genuinely believe he will turn out to be a good signing, who will bring something different.

As a non Man Utd afficianado and a true neutral from Scotland, just watch the Belgian national team at the moment, which is among the best squads in the world, and then watch Fellaini hold his own in a vastly talented group of players such as Hazard, Witsel and de Bruyn (all of them better than anything England has at the moment). While you are at it, then contemplate his performance against what Wayne Rooney cooked up in Brazil when ‘Roo’ should have shone in an England team vastly less talented than Belgium’s but did not prove capable of that. The sad truth is that Man Utd were a poor team last year and the faithful are looking for a scapegoat – and it was Sir Alex Ferguson who left it a poor team (while Moyes left a good team at Everton, who continue to do well despite lacking Utd’s zillions).

If Man Utd were to improve this coming season, and Fellaini stays, I am sure you will see a much better performance from the Belgian once he is not obliged to play in a very weak team that are well past it, part from the excellent van Persie.

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