Man United’s Tom Cleverley: It hurts being the scapegoat

Manchester United's Tom Cleverley says he isn't the type of midfielder to go round tackling people like Roy Keane

tom cleverley
Tom Cleverley won his first Premier League title last term Photo: Adidas

Tom Cleverley has admitted that it hurts being made the scapegoat for Manchester United’s poor season.

The 24-year-old has been heavily criticised for his below-par performances in the Red Devils midfield, with the defending champions already losing eight times this term.

I would like the fans on my side and it hurts a little bit when you have grown up at the club and love the club every bit as much as the supporters

Tom Cleverley

England international Cleverley, who didn’t feature in the 2-2 draw with Fulham on Sunday, has scored once in 18 top-flight appearances.

“When I first started getting singled out, it stung,” Cleverley told the Mirror. “But it’s something you have got to learn to take when the team is not doing well.

“My job goes under the radar at times. I am not a player who’s going to beat three or four people and stick it in the top corner or go round tackling people like Roy Keane.

“I would like the fans on my side and it hurts a little bit when you have grown up at the club and love the club every bit as much as the supporters.

“But there are other people in the current United squad who have been through this kind of thing and they have made sure their quality shone through.

“I have got to look at those people. I have learned to take it with a pinch of salt and I’m sure it will make me stronger for the rest of my career.

“I feel I’ve been made a scapegoat a little bit. A few people in the media certainly seem to have a perception of me not doing much in the team.

“Don’t get me wrong, I know I can do better but people are making a big thing about how I don’t score enough goals when that is not necessarily my first job in the team.”

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