MANCHESTER UNITED captain Bruno Fernandes insists youngster Facundo Pellistri deserves a place in the starting line-up.
Pellistri, 21, made a rare start for United against Bayern Munich in the Champions League on Wednesday and featured on the right wing.
The winger was tasked with taking on Bayern left-back Alphonso Davies during the Red Devils' 4-3 loss at the Allianz Arena.
And the Uruguay international impressed Fernandes in his first start of the season with other forwards like out-of-favour Jadon Sancho, Antony – who's on leave – and the injured Amad Diallo unavailable.
The Portugal international insists Pellistri deserves more opportunities after "always training hard" and showing commitment to the team.
Fernandes said: "Pellistri is one of the players that deserves his chance and deserves a lot of credit for everything he has done for the team.
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"He is someone who is always available, always training hard and someone who deserves his chance.
"He did well today, he did the job the manager asked him to do and we are all happy for him because he really deserves to get his chances."
United manager Erik ten Hag insisted he didn't start Pellistri due to a lack of options in the wings.
Instead, the Uruguayan earned his spot and the unenviable task of going up against Davies.
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Ten Hag said before the match: "It’s not that we’ve given it to him [the chance]. He deserves it.
"I thought it was not the right time as he came back from a tough journey in South America.
"We already had two players in Casemiro and Licha Martinez, coming from that journey but I think he’s ready for it.
"Now he has to prove it. It’s a great game and also he actually fits tactically very good as they have a tough player there in Davies with a lot of speed. He is the one who can match that speed.
"That’s why we play him [to go up against Davies]. He can match him defence wise and he’s also capable to be a threat.
"He is a very good dribbler, Pellistri, and Davies is not a great defender so we expect something from him."
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