Former Manchester City and Liverpool winger Craig Bellamy has urged Marouane Fellaini to accept the contract offer being tabled by Manchester United.
Talks with Fellaini’s representatives over a new deal have failed to progress in recent times after the Belgian rejected terms proposed in September.
It has been claimed by the BBC‘s Simon Stone this week that Man United were facing an uphill battle to keep Fellaini, who will have permission to speak with other clubs in January ahead of his contract expiring in June.
And Bellamy, speaking on Sky Sports, made it clear to Fellaini that the only way would be down if he decides to leave Old Trafford.
“If Manchester United want you and they’re willing to extend the contract you take it,” he said.
“A lot of players now get offered three-year contracts unless they’re at a very young age, then they tie them up at a longer deal.
“The way I look at it; it’s still Manchester United. It’s one of, if not the, biggest football club in the world. I’m of the firm belief that you don’t leave there. They tell you when you leave.
“He might have a better financial offer but he won’t have a bigger club.”
Bellamy is exactly right when he says that Fellaini won’t play for a bigger club if he leaves Man United, but we have to consider the possibility that this doesn’t actually trouble the Belgian.
His decision will essentially come down to which party is offering more of what he cares about. That could be money, or it could be a more regular, and perhaps even indispensable, role in a side’s starting XI – something not on offer at Old Trafford.
Fellaini may alternatively feel as if playing in a more advanced position – similar to the No.10 role he often occupied at Everton – should take priority. He may follow Mario Gomez’s steps and simply pick somewhere offering nice weather and a good lifestyle – a change from the Manchester rain.
But if he wants to compete at the very top and challenge for the biggest trophies, playing alongside world class internationals, then there is indeed only one place he should be next season.