Former Manchester United star, Robin Van Persie has admitted that Brazilian midfielder, Fred is the main reason behind Harry Maguire’s difficult start to the season.
Fred has been deployed by the United manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in front of the defence for three out of the Red Devils’ last four games this season and Van Persie believes this is majorly responsible for Maguire struggling this term.
He was however drafted in a more advanced role in last week’s 5-0 win over RB Leipzig in the Champions League and his performance attracted plenty of praise.
But it is playing in the deeper role that is proving to be the problem for the ace and his captain, according to Van Persie.
 “Everyone is talking about Maguire being fantastic on the ball, so far he’s not been fantastic on the ball going forward, with his passing,” Van Persie said on BT Sport before United’s defeat to Istanbul Basaksehir in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday.
“But that’s not only down to him.
“Before the show I talked with Owen [Hargreaves] about the positioning of the team overall and in some situations the team is not well positioned.
“You see Fred coming to take the ball from centre-back, he should not do that. Maguire should do that.
“He can do that forward pass. He should play higher up the pitch, where it is more difficult to play, but it gives everyone more options.”
And Fred was not the only culprit, as Van persie added: “The forward players should play as high as possible and find spaces in that area and not drop too deep.
“You see it’s not clicking because the positioning of the players is not right most of the time.”