Fabinho hopes Liverpool continue to put pressure on Manchester United and Erik ten Hag

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Liverpool had five good goals and one of their players pushed them forward, demanding more and looking for the kind of goal line that could really humiliate a beleaguered Manchester United side already down to 10 men. Admittedly, it was difficult for them to follow or even hear his instructions because Fabinho wasn’t barking them from his usual lower midfield position. Perhaps United should be relieved that he was injured, sitting at home yelling at the TV.

“I wanted the team to attack more to try to score more goals because we had one player more,” said Fabinho. “But it was the moment when the team tried to control more of the game and stabilize the ball. As a fan I wanted the team to score more goals because it was a great opportunity to score a historic goal at Old Trafford but of course the 5-0 wasn’t bad.” Not bad, in his judgement, was still historic , Liverpool’s biggest-ever winning margin at United.

But Fabinho, who can be a pragmatist on the pitch, felt more adventurous from his vantage point on the sofa. “Sometimes we’re on a funnier side than a player side, but you’re often on the pitch so you try to understand both sides a bit,” he reflected.

And Fabinho quickly understood what Manchester United meant against Liverpool. “This is the biggest game in England,” said the Brazilian. It turned into a disparity last season when Jurgen Klopp’s side netted nine unanswered goals against United, giving them their greatest aggregate score in a rivalry dating back to 1895. Factor in a 4-2 win in May 2021 and they have 13 goals in their last three meetings. Fabinho may have missed the 5-0 but he feels like a talisman. He has never lost a league game against United. A 3-1 win in December 2018 was a breakthrough for him after a slow start at Anfield.

“I remember my first game against them,” he recalled. “I played well but when you play well against them you get another dimension; The fans will look at you with different eyes.” Now United supporters see their side at the bottom of the table after being beaten 4-0 by Brentford. Liverpool hastened Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s death and could worsen Erik ten Hag’s start. “I don’t care if a win throws them a little more into the crisis,” said an unsympathetic Fabinho.

And yet, as he was quick to point out, United’s efforts are benefiting Liverpool. While Fabinho joined a club that had finished behind bitter opponents, they were separated by about 34 points last season. “Man United are a really big team and they have a lot of money to invest too. If something like that isn’t successful, I think it’s good for us because it’s one less team that will be fighting for titles,” said Fabinho. “If that also happens at City, I would be happy.”

His only regret is that a compatriot and colleague in the Brazilian team is a scapegoat. “The Man United thing hasn’t been successful in recent seasons, so you try to blame some players and sometimes I think Fred is that player,” he said, launching a case for the defence. “Last season he played really good football, maybe he was one of Man United’s best players. I hope Fred plays well this season and Man United plays like that.”

(Getty Images)

If Fred’s place is in jeopardy, it could come from another abundance of Brazilian defensive midfielders, with Casemiro close to a £60m move from Real Madrid. United have had a decidedly mixed record in the transfer market lately but they get the seal of approval from someone with expertise in the position. “He will be a good signing,” said Fabinho. “Casemiro is a smart guy. He’s a good player, he’s strong, he’s good in the air so it won’t be difficult for him to adapt when he gets to the Premier League.”

There may be an irony. Casemiro’s transfer could be part of a midfield carousel that could have hit Fabinho. Aurelien Tchouameni could replace a Brazilian at the Bernabeu; There were suggestions he could have made at Anfield instead, with the Frenchman believed to have been on Liverpool’s radar before joining Real.

Fabinho shrugged. “I’m really happy here so if Liverpool buy another No 6 it’s normal and I’ll fight for the team and for the position,” he said. “It is normal that good players are always linked to the club. I haven’t heard from Tchouameni. I have heard of that [Jude] Bellingham because he’s young and a really good player.” At the moment, however, Fabinho wasn’t immodest when speaking about his own importance. “I see myself as an important player for the team,” he said.

It’s a side that came tantalizingly close to a quadruple last season. The defeat in the Champions League final “hurt,” he said. He found Liverpool better than Real. Now, he says, he doesn’t think about it. The supporters helped with the healing process. “We knew we had to do the parade with the fans and most of the players didn’t want to because the atmosphere wasn’t right, but the parade helped me a lot personally because we forgot everything. We were just with the fans at the moment,” he explained.

“Sometimes we have to have that kind of experience to remind ourselves what this club means to the people and the fans.” And when they led 5-0 at Old Trafford last October and Fabinho wanted them a sixth or score a seventh goal, he became a fan himself.

https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/liverpool-manchester-united-result-old-trafford-fabinho-b2149527.html Fabinho hopes Liverpool continue to put pressure on Manchester United and Erik ten Hag

Fry Electronics Team

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