Warren Joyce has praised the attitude of Marouane Fellaini after his performance for Manchester United’s U21s on Monday night.
The Belgian midfielder dropped down to the U21s and that’s something which has previously frustrated some senior Man United players but not Fellaini.
His goal and two assists inspired the U21s to a dramatic 3-2 win over Liverpool and Joyce revealed he has always had a soft spot for Fellaini having watched him grow in his career.
“I thought his attitude was first class,” Joyce said.
“I obviously know him from being around the building and having discussions with him but I met him actually in Belgium a long time ago when he was at Standard Liege and I was with Royal Antwerp. So I’ve known him a long time really and watched his progress.
“When we were out there, we played Standard Liege in the semi-final of the Belgian Cup when Darron Gibson, Fraizer Campbell, Jonny Evans and Ryan Shawcross were on loan at Antwerp. So I’ve followed his path even before he came to Manchester United and before he came to England (with Everton).
Fair play to Fellaini. So many players drag their heels when asked to play for the U21s but he embraced it and led by example. That’s the sort of thing which will bring him more opportunities.
At the end of the day, it was against the U21s and you’d expect Fellaini to be head and shoulders above the players around him in terms of quality (and he was), but it’s whether he can take that back into first-team football.
Next up is West Ham at home and they are a team who are likely going to play on their aerial threat as a real strength, so don’t be surprised to see Fellaini involved in some capacity. Like him or loathe him, when he’s on form and playing well, he is a real danger to the opposition and a strong player to have in your team.