Manchester United legend believes club's breakout star is being targeted by physically-enthusiastic opponents.
The 18-year-old attacker has returned three goals and three assists from 15 appearances (or 960 minutes) of Premier League football, while also registering commendable statistics such as an 80% pass completion rate, a successful dribble once every 33 minutes on average and a key chance provided once every 60 minutes.
Speaking to the club's official website, Pallister said: 'The manager has talked about the kicks and the physical attention Adnan gets, and you can see that in every game. He does get targeted – in the Sunderland semi-final he got a couple of bad tackles, which I don't think the referee dealt with very well.'
Pallister, himself a physically strong centre back during his playing days, spoke highly of Januzaj's attitude: 'Adnan deserves credit, because players are targeting him as he is a threat. He's young and he's not grown into his body just yet, it looks as though he is getting whacked and picked upon. But the great thing about him is that, a bit like Ronaldo when he first came here, he picks himself up, dusts himself down and attacks them straight away.'
He continued: 'He's not fazed or bothered about the physical treatment he gets. He'll get the ball again and attack the same guy that has just kicked him. That is something that you look for in the character of players; once people do try to intimidate them, they don't take a backward step.'
With United tasked with taking on Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday, January 19, will the Chelsea defence make their presence known to Januzaj early? Or will Jose Mourinho instead opt for a tactic that starves Januzaj of the ball by denying him the service and targeting his midfield team-mates instead?
image: © joncandy