Rio Ferdinand believes Donny van de Beek is being left out of the Manchester United squad because he is being ‘too nice and polite about the situation’.
Van de Beek has started just four Premier League matches and played just five minutes of football after coming off the bench following his switch from Ajax to Manchester United.
Ferdinand believes this is due to how the 24-year-old is handling the situation. Nevertheless, has told Van de Beek to continue to ‘work hard’ as he believes this experience will build his ‘character and personality.’
Speaking on his FIVE YouTube channel, Ferdinand said: ‘I think the big thing with Donny van de Beek – and he’s a great guy, we’ve had him on the show before – he’s a really calm, relaxed guy.
‘I think this is a funny situation because if he was a bad guy and he was volatile and he was loud, he’d be gone. He wouldn’t be at Man United.
‘And sometimes when you’re too nice maybe, or you’re nice about a situation and you’re polite, you might not get the situation that you really require for yourself. And I think that’s probably the problem for someone like Donny van de Beek.’
Ferdinand also admitted to speaking to Van de Beek personally. He said: ‘It’s crazy because I saw him the other day, I spoke to him.
‘I said to him, “Regardless of what happens man, just work hard” and I think he said that on the show.
‘And I said to him, “These experiences are what build people, they build you as a human being but they build you as a player: the character, the personality. And I think in time you’ll look back and think that made me stronger.”
‘He will never see it now, but he’ll look back and go, “You know what, that helped make me get stronger” and he can use this to fuel him and push him on in the next phase of his career when it comes.’
Nevertheless, it is clear the situation his getting to Van de Beek as he had to be consoled by team-mates after once again being left on the bench during United’s victory over Villarreal – and was seen throwing his chewing gum down in frustration.
Van de Beek was on the bench for the tie but with a minute to play could not contain his anger after being overlooked when United prepared a double change to bring on Jesse Lingard and Fred – despite having an allocation for one more substitution.
Van de Beel was consoled by Dean Henderson and Eric Bailly as he covered his face with his hand before appearing to take out chewing gum from his mouth and throwing it down into the United technical area where manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was standing.
Solskjaer has since said he understands Van de Beek’s frustration over his lack of playing time but admitted there is no room for sulkers in his team.
‘I manage a squad full of international footballers, competitive footballers, who want to make a difference, to play,’ said the United boss.
‘They all want to be on the pitch, of course they do. Donny was ready to come, as all players should be. I have been a sub more than anyone in this club probably, I must have the record, and you have to be ready all the time.
‘I have been not very happy a few times, but that is just a decision the manager makes. Alex (Telles) was coming off as a left-back and Fred did that job well.
‘I understand the frustration, every player is keen to play, that has to built into energy and determination for when you come on. Then show me. That is not just Donny, all the players.
‘I have a squad of internationals and if we’re going to be successful together we need positive energy. We can’t have energy sappers or sulkers.
‘Donny has never ever affected his team negatively. Just so that is said. But as soon as I see players affecting the team negatively that is a different scenario. Then I will probably be a little bit firmer.’