Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel has hailed former teammate and current manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for giving Brazilian midfielder Fred the platform to play an instrumental role at the club this season. Under Jose Mourinho, Fred did not have the best of times, seemingly scapegoated for the clubs demise.
However, since Solskjaer became the manager of the club, Fred has changed his fortunes at the club, looking like the midfielder he was tipped to be, raising his game considerably after having a long spell in the team because of injury. Schmeichel, who was speaking to CNN via Instagram Live, spoke about the Brazilian, saying:
“Fred has been, for me, absolutely instrumental in how well the club has done this season.
“He was always perfect for the club but he’s now been given playing time and the more time he’s been given, the more confidence he’s gained and for me, he’s been one of the great stories this season at Manchester United.
“Of course it’s down to Fred but it’s down to Ole for giving him that confidence. I like that.”
Ever since the start of the current season, which was delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic, which suspended world football in mid-March, Solskjaer has shown that he is willing to give chances to players who have not quite got there in terms of playability for various reasons, giving them a chance to show what they can do.
For Fred, this seems to have worked so far. This season, the Brazilian has made a total of 39 appearances, playing in the Premier League, the Carabao Cup, the UEFA Europa League, and the Emirates FA Cup, scoring two goals and four assists – all coming in the Europa League this season. Schmeichel, concluding his interview about Fred, said:
“I like the way he’s [Solskjaer] kind of introduced players that were already there but are now in the first team and are now playing well.
“He’s also brought all these values in. The players now know them. If you don’t share our values, there’s no place for you here. So you have to live up to his values.
“He’s bringing in his own culture and you can see it and it’s there and it’s brilliant.”