There is no doubt that Marouane Fellaini is one of the most disliked players by Manchester United fans. Whether it’s his lack of technical ability, his reckless elbows, random flowing around the pitch, or anything else, the vast majority of Manchester United fans seem to dislike the Belgian International. Unfortunately for Fellaini, it has been this way from his get-go at the club. Coming in as David Moyes “star signing” for a fee around £27.5 million in September of 2013, Fellaini has left many fans unpleased by his performances, so much so that he was a favorite to leave the club during the current summer transfer period.
Fortunately for Fellaini, it seems that he no longer has to worry about his future, and that comes down to Jose Mourinho. After three underwhelming years at Manchester United, the only thing left for Fellaini to do was leave the club, but it looks like that won’t be the case for the upcoming seasons. In a recent press conference, Mourinho discussed how he has already been able to transform Fellaini, who only misplaced six of his 46 attempted passes.
Marouane Fellaini's pass map tonight. Didn't try anything out of the ordinary, kept it simple. Astute performance. pic.twitter.com/J5Jf4dDQPO
— Liam Canning (@LiamPaulCanning) August 19, 2016
“Maybe a simple phone call can make a difference, the player that was feeling not loved, a player that was feeling when the market opened, everybody was saying he was leaving, everybody was writing was not the player for me, he was on the move, maybe a simple phone call the day after my presentation changed a lot.
“Because I told him just simply, ‘Forget everything you read, forget everything, with me you don’t leave for sure.’ Maybe that word of confidence – unexpected for him – maybe changed and I think the more organized the team played the easier for the players to feel confident.
“He’s played well with [Michael] Carrick, he played well with [Ander] Herrera, he played well with Paul, [Pogba] I think he’s full of confidence.”
A single phone call. That is all that it took for Fellaini to become a key member of the current Manchester United roster. Whilst I believe that there are better options to play the role that is currently played by Fellaini, I must give prompts to Jose Mourinho for giving Fellaini an opportunity to show us all what he can give to the team, and he has done so in the past two games in fine fashion. We saw a period under Louis van Gaal when Fellaini was a regular starter for a couple of weeks, and he played a key part in a number of important victories. I hope to see more of that under Jose Mourinho, and also look forward to watching Fellaini develop into a possible vital player for the squad. In the coming weeks, it should be interesting to see how Fellaini is able to play with the other three mentioned midfielders, as I believe each one of them has a different style of play compared to each other. Jose Mourinho also commented on how he is pleased to know that fans are behind their players, by saying:
“I’m very happy. The crowd was magnificent. I think they’re creating a good relation with the team, with the players, even players I could feel in previous years the relation was not the best and it is the same clear example: Fellaini.
“He’s playing so well that he’s changing completely the relation. What pleases me more is not just the guys but the others who are coming to a different level, the way Valencia’s playing, Blind, Marouane and I could give you other examples.”
I heavily believe that a major reason to why Fellaini has struggled to be consistent at Manchester United is because the fans have never been fully behind his back, and now it might finally be a time when fans begin to see the benefits he can bring to the club.