Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Michael's United Michael's United Front ; Bryan Robson Is Full of Praise for the Reds' Forward Thinker and Says He Doesn't

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Michael's United Michael's United Front ; Bryan Robson Is Full of Praise for the Reds' Forward Thinker and Says He Doesn't

Article excerpt

BRYAN Robson has hailed forwardthinking Michael Carrick - and says the champions don't need to find a powerhouse midfield sidekick for him. Thirty one-year-old Carrick was short-listed for the PFA Player of the Year and was in the PFA Premier League team of the season as United romped to a 20th title.

And he is set to be a leading contender in the Football Writers' Footballer of the Year vote and challenge for United's individual club honours.

Carrick's shift from safetyfirst to attacking distributor has been key for the Reds according to Robbo.

"Michael Carrick has had a great season. He has been outstanding. He's a fantastic player and I really like him," former United Captain Marvel Robbo told M.E.N. Sport.

"He is such an intelligent player. He is not in the mould of myself and Roy Keane. He is not our type of player. We were forceful and aggressive.

"But Michael has a football brain. He gets in the right areas and reads the game really well.

"He's been off the radar for a lot of people until this season but he's won five league titles from seven years at the club that is just fantastic and says all you need to know about him.

"He has got even better this year though. If he gets a ball off a full-back now he'll hit the forwards really quickly with his accurate passing. He is definitely passing the ball forward a lot more than he used to.

"I am sure the boss and his staff have been on at him that he can't keep playing safe. You can't keep passing it in little triangles between your centre half and full back you have to get it up to the forward.

"I am sure they have told him to be more progressive with his forward play.

"I think Michael probably always thought I'll let Paul Scholes get on with that side of things and let him run the game. But with Scholesy out injured and not playing every match this season anyway, all of a sudden the onus has been on him to do it and he has taken it on board."

Carrick has been the standout figure in a Reds engine room that fans and critics alike believe needs attention during the summer.

But Robson doesn't believe a big-name but has to be top priority in the department. …

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