The 25-year-old was the club’s only major signing in the summer, arriving for around £52.7m, but you would be forgiven for forgetting he was even there.
He last completed 90 minutes back in November, and has only managed 126 minutes of football over three games under Solskjaer, who has recently preferred to use Andreas Pereira as the second choice supporting midfielder behind Paul Pogba.
According to M.E.N‘s Samuel Luckhurst, the club have given ‘very positive feedback’ on Fred‘s training performances but feel he requires more time to ‘properly adapt’ to the Premier League.
But he may not be too far away. The club, as noted by Luckhurst, studied Fred closely before signing him and clearly believe he can offer the United team something different. He was not merely foisted on Jose Mourinho. And eventually, by degrees, we will see him appearing in a red shirt, growing in confidence and intellect, until the Premier League feels like a natural habitat.
United should not be criticised for exercising patience over introducing Fred into the mould.