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Rio Ferdinand

Hakim Ziyech agrees with Rio Ferdinand about Man Utd's Donny van de Beek

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"I think Bruno was the main player today that benefited from him being in this team." The Dutchman was handed a rare start against Istanbul Basaksehir at Old Trafford on Tuesday and impressed in a deep-lying midfield role as United stormed to a 4-1 win.


Donny van de Beek was handed a rare start, but repaid Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's faith as he played a starring role in the win, as goals from Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford and Daniel James sealed the three points.

Edinson Cavani started for Manchester United for the first time (Picture: Getty Images)

"As you saw today, it was telling of the way he played. He can play off one touch, two touch, he can play as a deep-lying player, as an eight, or even as a 10- as we saw later in the game." Ferdinand's fellow ex-United star Paul Scholes added: "Where he played tonight looked like his best position.

It's the intelligence, he's the one player in this squad who's happy playing one-touch, who's happy playing two-touch, who's happy keeping it simple.

"I think he'll be willing to try and do that (defensive side), but it won't be the defensive quality he'll bring, it'll be the link-up play between the forward players which is important." Rio Ferdinand questioned why Van de Beek is yet to start for United in the Premier League, after proving he can operate in a deeper role.

"Yeah, I really, really was [ impressed ]," Ferdinand told BT Sport.

Van de Beek staked a serious claim for a regular spot in United's team on Tuesday (Image: Offside via Getty Images)

"The boys wanted to play, they enjoyed it. It's a Champions League night at home at Old Trafford, you expect them to enjoy themselves, and we created some great chances, some very nice goals, and I was very pleased." JUST IN: Lewis Hamilton contract: F1 world champion's demands emerge Edinson Cavani was named in the starting line-up whilst Van de Beek also got a rare start, and Solskjaer said he was pleased with how the pair played.

'He'll sacrifice parts of his game for other people to flourish, and that's an important factor in any great team, you need players like that.

"He's not one of those players that is waiting to adjust, I think he's a player who has a great understanding of the game.

Donny van de Beek's unselfish nature will help teammates like Bruno Fernandes "flourish" at Man Utd, according to club legend Rio Ferdinand.

"And the penalty, where the winning goal came from, came from him.

"Great night for Donny van de Beek- he's waited a long time, big signing, £40m. I think Ole is the man to answer that question (why he's not being playing regularly)," Ferdinand said.

"I thought it was refreshing to see Man United play a much more expansive type of football at Old Trafford where it wasn't two holding midfielders, it was players that can play in there who can transfer the ball into the likes of Bruno, Rashford, Martial and Cavani.