Much has been said about Manchester United’s newest signing Marouane Fellaini in recent days, and now former defender Henning Berg has added to the quotes by claiming the Belgian could be as influential as Eric Cantona.
“He’s got great potential and if he’s consistent with his best level, he will be a fantastic signing,” Berg told the Telegraph.
Cantona’s arrival at Old Trafford sparked a renaissance that continues to this day, and former United defender Berg cannot help but see similarities between the iconic Frenchman and the former Everton midfielder.
“Every game for United is a big one,” Berg said, “so I think he will rise to that and enjoy it.
“When Cantona came, he had that mentality every game. I’m not saying he’s going to be the same, but he can be.”
It is a bold statement, and in truth Fellaini should be allowed to blossom on his own terms rather than being compared to one of United’s most legendary players. But fans will hope he can have just a proportion of Cantona’s influence on his new team.
To international news now, with Wilfried Zaha providing the assist in England’s under-21’s 1-1 draw with Finland yesterday. His cross was turned in by West Bromwich Albion’s Saido Berahino to ensure Gareth Southgate didn’t finish the match empty handed.
The result was tarnished by the sending-off of Liverpool’s Andre Wisdom in the second half, although both Zaha and United defender Michael Keane can be happy with their overall performances.
And finally, as England’s senior side prepare for their vital World Cup qualifier against Ukraine tonight, opposing forward Andriy Yarmolenko believes Roy Hodgson’s side could be in trouble without Wayne Rooney.
“Rooney is the main threat of the England team’s attack, so we have to use his absence,” Yarmolenko said.
“The English will not be at their full strength on the pitch and this is a great opportunity for us to improve our position in the group.”
image: © Tom Brogan