Jose Mourinho’s tenure as Manchester United manager does not seem as rosy as it did a couple of weeks ago. After a decent start to the Premier League campaign the side lost to Manchester City in the derby and then were humbled by Feyenoord in the Europa League and most recently, by the Premier League side, Watford.
Many were already out with their pitchforks blaming the manager and even Paul Pogba for not doing enough, but in truth, United still suffer the hangover of Louis van Gaal’s time at the club and Jose has not revolutionised the play in any way.
No player has started the season brightly it seems but there is one star who is slowly getting back to his best. Marouane Fellaini was often made the scapegoat for United’s failings last season but he is certainly improving under Jose Mourinho.
Using stats provided by Squawka.com, we compare the Belgian’s stats from last season and this campaign. To ensure a proper comparison, we would be looking at the per 90-minute stats for certain attributes since this season has only begun.
The pass completion percentage of the Belgian has certainly seen a boost. Fellaini now averages a pass completion percentage of 88% compared to 83% from last season. He is also doing more with the passes as the United midfielder boasts 1.4 key passes per 90 minutes compared to 0.93 last season.
Fellaini is known for his ability to tackle and keep the midfield battle going. He certainly seems to have ramped up his ability to defend and provide protection for the team. The 28-year-old now wins 2.25 tackles per 90 minutes when compared to 1.52 per 90 from last season.
He also seems to be getting better at beating opponents and has a 100% success rate in take ons this season. Fellaini’s greatest strength has to be his ability to win headers and the Belgian has taken that stat up a notch as well.
Fellaini wins close to 70% of his aerial duels this season and that is higher than the 51% he managed last season in the Premier League. His interception numbers and clearances per 90 minutes are also up compared to last season and it only should get better for Fellaini as the season progresses.
Jose Mourinho is known for his defensive approach to setting up teams and it is pouring into the Manchester United team now. Fellaini might not be the player taking a lot of plaudits but he certainly is one of the better United players this season.