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Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been warned over the future of Donny van de Beek – with the Dutch star's agent insisting "he cannot have another season like last year".
The midfielder has barely appeared under Solskjaer since arriving at Old Trafford in a £35m transfer last September.
The 24-year-old featured just 19 times in the Premier League last season – with just four starts.
The Netherlands international was once again an unused substitute during United's 1-1 draw with Southampton at the weekend.
But Solskjaer insisted the Dutchman remained a key part of his future plans – claiming van de Beek would be "important for us".
And that stance has been backed up by the midfielder's agent.
"Everyone within the club knows that Donny cannot have another season like last year," van de Beek's agent, Guido Albers, told De Telegraaf.
“In preparation, clarity has been provided about his role. The fans had already embraced him before, but the most important thing is that the trainer has now provided clarity in the English press.
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"We are happy with that. And I assume that Donny will play a lot in one of the positions in midfield in the coming period.”
The challenge now for van de Beek, who committed himself to a body transformation over the summer, is muscling in on a spot in United's bloated central midfield.
The uncertainty over the future of Paul Pogba could have opened the door for the Dutchman, but Pogba has started the season in spectacular fashion – laying on four assists in United's opening two games.
But Solskjaer appears to have committed to finding a regular role for the midfield maestro regardless.
However, former United star Rio Ferdinand isn't convinced that van de Beek will be given the chance to actually star under Solskjaer this year.
"Donny van de Beek, he’s not going to get a chance in this team is he? £40 million and he ain’t going to play,’ Ferdinand told FIVE.
"Anyone coming in under Ole is an Ole signing. You give him the credit for the players who come in an do well, and you’ve got to take [criticism].
"I’m not one of those people who think every signing is going to be great. You are going to get them wrong, Fergie got them wrong.
"It’s inevitable when you sign so many players that you get one or two wrong.
"Van De Beek, you don’t know if he’s wrong or right because he doesn’t get the opportunity. That’s the problem."
- Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
- Rio Ferdinand
- Premier League
- Manchester United FC
- The Inside Track
- The Inside Track – Football
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