After their defeat against Newcastle, Manchester United had only two weeks to come up with a tactical plan to combat the high flying Liverpool side and unbelievable it might sound but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer did exactly what the doctor ordered and as a hybrid of false nine and a number ten, Andreas Pereira was at the centre of it.
Few might question Pereira’s decision making at times, however, but his energy and enthusiasm we unmatched and were instrumental in bringing United forward from midfield. After his fantastic performance, can he further build on this performance against Liverpool and establish himself in his best position seems to be the question though?
Was this Pereira’s best performance as a Manchester United player?
Without a single doubt, it can be said that this was Pereira’s best performance of the season for Manchester United. He was on the front foot throughout, bustling into tackles and bursting forward with speed in a high-tempo United display.
Given the fact that Juan Mata has not been doing justice to the number 10 role in recent weeks, Pereira showed enough promise to deserves few games as the new number 10 to prove his abilities.
Pereira created three chances against Liverpool while Mata failed to make any key passes against Alkmaar or Newcastle.
How can Pereira build on the performance?
Decision-making ability during the crucial moments of the game is something Pereira definitely needs to work on. He was very energetic in the middle but certainly lacked the composure one expects from a player at his level. He shot when he should have passed, and made wrong calls at crucial moments. We expect that it will come to him as he packs more minutes under his belt.
Against Liverpool, he was getting enough space so that he could run into the pockets, however, against the smaller teams like Norwich who will sit back and defend, Pereira will certainly be tested for his composure.
Pereira needs to show that this display wasn’t just the exception to the rule, and reproduce a performance of similar gusto in less glamorous and passionate matches.