Manchester United legend backs summer signing to emulate former midfield greats.
The presence of a complete midfielder at Manchester United is almost as synonymous with Old Trafford as an iconic number 7.
From Duncan Edwards to Nobby Stiles, Bryan Robson and Roy Keane, there has long been an influential player in the middle of United's park and, according to one tackler from the two title-winning sides of the 60s – Pat Crerard – summer signing Marouane Fellaini, David Moyes' sole recruit, will continue that tradition, heralding the transfer as an 'important buy'.
'Down the years, we’ve had some magnificent players in midfield, like Roy Keane and Bryan Robson. And now, with Fellaini, we’ve got much more power and strength than we had last year, so I think he’s a big asset,' said Crerand to the club's official website.
The 74-year-old, who commentates on MUTV, added: 'I think he’s a threat around the penalty area. When there are free-kicks and corner kicks around the box, he’s going to be a big, big threat. And, every time a ball comes into our defensive area, he’s going to be a good player to have there as well.
'I think his height and strength could be big factors for us but I’m not taking anything away from his [technical] ability either, I think he’s also a very good footballer. I think he’s a very good buy; there are a lot of fans out there thinking about Ronaldo and Bale and that sort of player, but I think he’s an important buy for the club.
'United have done a great bit of business. He wanted to play for the club and that’s a big thing in itself.'
Fellaini, meanwhile, believes his five year experience of life in the Premier League as an Evertonian will stand him in good stead throughout the duration of his contract with a club who have title ambitions.
'Manchester United has the quality to win the championship so I look forward to this,' he said, as reported by Daily Mail.
Yet to feature for the club, Fellaini could make his debut against Crystal Palace on September 14.
image: © Iris Chase