Ander Herrera still an important player at Manchester United?

Although Ander Herrera hasn’t played many games for Manchester United this season, he still remains an integral part of the squad and still has many years left in him at Old Trafford.

The Spanish midfielder joined United from Athletic Bilbao back in 2014 and was seen as a very promising player who was looking to break into a successful Spanish team. Since then, however, it hasn’t been all plain sailing for the 28-year-old, and he has found life tough in the Premier League.

The midfielder had a tough start to his United career after he picked up an injury after just one game. Upon his return, though the Spaniard both scored and assisted goals in a 4-0 win against Queens Park Rangers. From then on, Herrera was an integral part of United’s starting XI, and made 26 appearances, scoring six goals.

The following season was more of the same, Herrera played in all put 11 of United’s league games, and won his first trophy at Old Trafford, winning the FA Cup against Crystal Palace.

However, last season was a real breakthrough season for Herrera at United and was in sensational form in Mourinho’s first year at Old Trafford. He had a starring role in both United’s League Cup and Europa League-winning campaigns. Herrera also started 31 league games, becoming an integral team player for the Reds.

The performance that really stood out last season was the home game against Chelsea where Herrera nullified PFA Player of the year Eden Hazard, man marking him for 90 minutes in the 2-0 win.

However, this season, games have been very hard to come by for the 28-year-old and has made most of his appearances off of the bench, and often late in games. Apparently, it all stems from the Europa League tie against Celta Vigo last season. Herrera reportedly invited a friend with close links to the Spanish sides to United’s Carrington training ground.

The Daily Mail reported that boss Jose Mourinho was furious about the incident and firmly laid down the law to the Spaniard. Ever since then Herrera’s game time has been limited, and his relationship with the boss has been somewhat fractured.

However, in spite of that Herrera still remains a vital player for United and will give his all to the team if called upon. Speaking in September, the midfielder said:

“I am always ready to play. I am a team player and when the manager needs me, I will be there and that’s it. In football, there are no surprises.”

At just 28, Herrera has a lot of years of football left in him, and the fact that Barcelona are reportedly interested in the Spaniard shows just how highly regarded he still is despite his lack of game time.

He has found it tough to get in the side ahead of players such as Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic, Scott McTominay and Marouane Fellaini but with Michael Carrick retiring at the end of the season and Fellaini likely to leave the club on a free, United are going to need some depth to the midfield, and Herrera is a player who can add a lot to the squad, United need to hang on to him.

Written by Dan Pearce

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