Rio Ferdinand slams 26-year-old’s display in Man United’s 3-0 loss to FC Barcelona

Man United legend Rio Ferdinand wasn't impressed with Fred's performance in Tuesday night's 3-0 loss to FC Barcelona

Rio Ferdinand
Ex-Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand (Photo: BT Sport)

Rio Ferdinand didn’t hold back in his assessment of Fred’s performance in Manchester United’s 3-0 loss to FC Barcelona on Tuesday night.

The Brazil international was named in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side as Manchester United looked to overturn a 1-0 deficit from the first leg of the quarter-final tie.

The 26-year-old has performed well in recent weeks to earn a place in the Manchester United team for one of the biggest games of their season.

However, Fred suffered the humiliation of being nutmegged by Lionel Messi in the lead-up to FC Barcelona’s first goal at Camp Nou.

David De Gea made a rare mistake for Messi’s second goal minutes later to effectively end Manchester United’s hopes of an unlikely comeback.

Former Manchester United defender Ferdinand was critical of Fred’s role in Messi’s breakthrough goal that ended the visitors’ resistance.

“Fred is in the mix there, he should just get rid of it,” Ferdinand told BT Sport. “But De Gea, who has been in superb form for three or four years, he’ll be so disappointed.”

Ferdinand added: “We said before the game that if he decides to turn up and take the game by the scruff of the neck then he can do it and he’s done that.

“Saying that, it was two mistakes from Manchester United. Ashley Young there will be disappointed – he didn’t clear the ball – but after that it’s all about Messi.

“The nutmeg on Fred and the finish. Precision finishing there. It was devastating how clinical he was.”

Manchester United will return to Premier League action with a trip to Everton in their next top-flight fixture at Goodison Park on Sunday.

The Red Devils are in sixth spot in the Premier League table and two points adrift of fourth-placed Arsenal in the race to secure a final Champions League spot.

Manchester United have lost five of their last seven games in all competitions to make an underwhelming start to Solskjaer’s permanent reign.

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