Paul Parker has been ‘disappointed’ by the lack of opportunities handed to Donny van de Beek and feels Ole Gunnar Solskjaer should drop either Scott McTominay or Fred to make room for him in the Manchester United midfield.
Van de Beek has largely been on the fringes since his £40million summer move from Ajax and Parker branded his arrival a ‘waste of time’.
The 23-year-old has started just two Premier League matches this season, featuring a further 11 times off the bench, and has only completed 90 minutes once in England’s top flight.
That is surprising to Parker, who is an admirer of the ‘tenacious’ Dutch international – who is in line to return from injury this week – and he feels his talents are being wasted.
In his Eurosport column, the former England defender wrote: ‘Why are United always playing with a midfield two who can only break up a game, like Fred and Scott McTominay?
‘Surely one of them can be left out for somebody who gets around the pitch, like Van de Beek.
‘He’s tenacious, reads situations, he gets around the box and he’s got quick feet. You can’t tell me that’s not a player you wouldn’t want in your team.
‘On three occasions, I saw him live for Ajax and was impressed. So it’s disappointing that he hasn’t been given an opportunity.’
While Parker cannot understand why Van de Beek remains an outcast at Old Trafford, he feels he should look to Fred’s progression at the club as inspiration as he looks to revive his Manchester United career.
‘I think Van de Beek should look to Fred as an example of a player who has turned his fortunes around at United – even if his situation is worse than the Brazilian’s was,’ added Parker.
‘So when you look at Van de Beek, an established international player, you wonder if he can follow the same path. Currently, all you’re saying to yourself is, “there’s something wrong there”.
‘Meanwhile, you also wonder what other players at Old Trafford are feeling when they see a talent like him sitting around. It’s surely got to the point that even they are asking questions.’