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Welbeck: Tom Is Great

Manchester United’s best form this season has coincided with Tom Cleverley starting in the centre of midfield. With plenty of people claiming Cleverley is ready to fill Paul Scholes’ boots, Danny Welbeck has today sung the praises of his team mate.

“I think he can become a world-class player,” said Welbeck. “Football is such a simple game, it’s how hard you make it for yourself. Tom keeps it so simple and it is hard to do that when you’re in centre-midfield, but Tom does that. He gets the ball, passes it, moves into space and he’s just always there as an extra option every time you’ve got the ball. He’s really good to play with, I enjoy playing with him so much and he’s got the awareness, the vision and the ability to pick out a pass and actually produce a final pass as well. He’s just going to carry on improving. You can see that every single day in training. He’s a really good player.”

Cleverley and Welbeck are both products of our youth system and Danny reckons their good relationship helps their connection on the pitch.

“We are really good friends off the field and quite a few people come up to us and tell us that it shows on the field,” he added. “We’ve been through the same training schedule growing up through the academy, the same coaches who have taught us the same things, so we’re on the same wavelength and we know each other’s games inside out, more or less.”

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. ironbrand says: Any truth to this link???

  2. FULLARD says:

    indeed he is danny, as are you. just hope they doesn’t stop improving because they both have the potential to become world class players, but if they get too comfortable in the first team they may plateau.

  3. Briggsy says:


    It’s a load of bollocks in my eyes. The paper said it’s because Vidic isn’t performing – which he is, being, our top defender. Stated he’s not happy – He stated only a few months back when signing a bloody new contract that him and his wife is happy. Tosh and double tosh. Story was written by Mr Ladyman.. says it all

  4. Ruudboy says:

    Hope Cleverley is ready to come back bcos we really missed him.

  5. samuel - united WE stand says:

    This rumours with vidic to realmadrid doesn’t make much sense, you’d think his words and signing a new deal emphasised his commitment but then again so did ronaldo and look what happened, i guess whatever will be will be but united need vidic until the young talents fully gain enough experience to hold down a position.

  6. kanchelskis says:

    Discussion going on under a Guardian story about Spain and the types of player they produce. Wilshere and Cleverley inevitably raised as the closest we have. As I pointed out over there:

    And what happens to players like Cleverly in England? Ahead of a trip to the Reebok, fellow Englishman Kevin Davies proudly states he’s going to give the Utd team ‘a going over’ – promptly goes in hard (presumably with his manager’s blessing) and wrecks Cleverly’s ankle, putting him out for over a month.

    Cheers Kev – you keep doing your bit for English football, yeh?

  7. Heatz says:

    TC!! he is spesh that kid. So exciting with all the youngsters coming through. I just think an experienced and quality CM would help Clevs develop even more and give us that extra bit of depth and options.

    As for Vida, he aint going anywhere. He is our best cb (as Briggsy said) and he signed a new contract. I cant imagine Fergie getting shot of him.


  8. CedarsDevil says:

    Well said Danny and I agree with FULLARD, so are you….. Our wee Thomas has been a revelation this season, I just hope he stays fit….. Might be too soon to say if he is the only answer to our midfield issues as such but he certainly has the potential to be…..

    Nothing gives me more joy than seeing home grown players making it through to the first team and succeeding

  9. CedarsDevil says:


    Do not get me started on Davies my friend! How he was not even booked for that challenge still baffles me…. Hopefully though Clev will come back stronger and better after his minor set back the other week

  10. kanchelskis says:

    Can you imagine if we had the Fletcher of two seasons ago? A pairing of him and Cleverly, with Rooney dropping off the main striker, would provide such a strong central area.

  11. Heatz says:

    TC!! what a player that lad is. It’s so exciting watching these youngsters coming through. I still think we need an experienced and quality CM to hope Tommy Clevs develop and give us the depth we need as well as some more options in the middle of the park.

    As for Vida leaving, what a loada shit!! As Briggsy said he has just signed a new deal and he is our best cb!! I couldn’t imagine Fergie getting shot of him.


  12. kanchelskis says:


    I think he did get booked for it, didn’t he? It was the chop on Evra later on that he somehow got away with.

  13. CedarsDevil says:


    I think its the other way round buddy……

  14. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Fletcher of two seasons ago, fletcher of 50 seasons ago blah fucking blah, he has not owned that midfield and admittedly he is a good player but the way you bang on about him anyone would think he is michele platini, united’s midfield need a massive revamp, more mobile dynamic midfielders are needed, fletcher was never the solution and i honestly think its a myth that he’d have stopped the barca’s juggernaut.

    On topic i think cleverly has been a revelation. he has class in his style, dynamic, intelligent on and off the ball, passes accurately and precisely and then takes up another position to give players options, also can produce a final pass or cross due to his vision.

    Everything we need in midfield, he is a genuine playmaker with huge potential, i hope we improve the midfield and not put all the burden on him either by bringing talented players through or buy.

    Welbeck himself is a huge talent, hopefully both stay grounded and fulfill their potential that goes for every potential star at united.

  15. kanchelskis says:

    @samuel – united WE stand

    No, I said that a combination of him, Cleverly and Rooney dropping would be effective, not that he was some kind of world-beater.

  16. kanchelskis says:


    I’ll take your word for it!

  17. denton davey says:

    Kanchelskis @ 12:00: “Can you imagine if we had the Fletcher of two seasons ago? A pairing of him and Cleverly, with Rooney dropping off the main striker, would provide such a strong central area.”

    I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see this combination playing together in crunch time – February/March/April/May.

    Right now, SAF is “tinkering” because that’s how he determines what he wants in terms of personnel after the new year. And that’s why he always points out that his plan is to be “there or thereabouts” at the turn of the year. The first five months are for experimentation; the next five months are for trophies.

  18. CedarsDevil says:


    Always enjoy your posts, may not always agree but that’s fine….. Your latest post was spot on. Well said

  19. Costas says:

    Your neck is hurting you fellas? ;)

    Off topic, but it was really disappointing to hear Newcastle change their ground’s name. St James’ has always been one of my favorite away grounds. Who cares about tradition when you can make some extra money hey?

  20. MG says:

    Breaking News

    Sir Alex:

    I will get rid of everyone at United!

    United Boss:

    Harry said FM 12 The Sir Alex Ferguson 25 year Edition will make me billions


    Relieved at the thought of SAF finally leaving reality


    This will give us world domination


    Leeds United

    Jim’ll fix it.


    Disclaimer: SAF does not dream.


  21. CedarsDevil says:

    Absolutely must see video, pay your respects fellas and learn about our history……

  22. odbpowell says:

    To get the best out of TC, you need other players like TC: ballplayers who play to feet, spin around each other and look to give and go. Anderson seems to dovetail nicely with him, so they would be my first choice middle two right now, but I just wish Fergie would prioritise that kind of player over the more direct, physical kind he seems to prefer. It was a shame we missed out on Ramsey a few years ago, really. Now that would have been value for money.

  23. CedarsDevil says:

    Brought a tear to my eye that video, wish I was born back then to watch the Babes play, my late dad did….For me, I could never really express how much I love our great club or how they have affected me throughout my life……….. RIP Duncan

    I was probably the first here to compare Phil Jones to him, hopefully he will fulfill that potential

    God I love UNITED

  24. nm says:

    playmaker ? yadda yadda. Since when have United played with a playmaker? Cleverley is the man that opens teams up. Fletch once he gets back his full fitness will shut a few up who have written him off at 26. The man was top drawer before that violent robbery and virus and for many on here was the first or second name on team sheet. His performance against City and that goal weren’t too shabby. I really do think some are talking about Fletch as though he is finished. Piss take. A fit Darren and Tom would be excellent.

  25. nm says:

    Also this burden on Tom nonsense. He is top class and will thrive on it , not shrink. Take a look at him in the under 15′s. He looked about 10. He was tiny. He has worked his arse off that kid and is reaping the rewards. He is a stocky little lad now with plenty of strength, both physically and mentally.

  26. MG says:

    On a really funny note I read that Yaya Toure said that citys second string could get to the CL final

    Now they beat us 6-1 – fair enough – not that they actually did all of the hard work – we let them in doors open and all

    But come on…


  27. MG says:

    Now where did Sneijder go?


  28. RedHound says:

    United wanted Nasri right? City got him, latest i hear is he has chronic tendottitis in his knees. Sneijder? injury prone now eh? and whaddaya know Hargreaves is injury prone again after his miraculous recovery at city’s HQ

  29. CedarsDevil says:


    You beauty…… You and I always knew that was the case anyway

  30. Costas says:


    I was a bit suspicious about those comments, especially the “slave” term. However, you can never be sure nowdays. Maybe he made those comments and maybe he didn’t. We will never know for sure I feel. But the fact that he made this statement was a step in the right direction. I feel bad for the predicament he’s in, but there’s no reason for him to depart the club on bad terms.

  31. wayne says:

    @Costas i was definitly one mate,don’t see how a polish interviewer doesn’t understand polish but as you said his statement shows if he did say it,then has regrets it

    UTD have 660 mill fans fucking mental

  32. kanchelskis says:


    If they were all ‘fan’ enough to stump up just two quid each, they could buy the club!

    A logistical challenge, though, to say the least.

  33. WillieRedNut says:

    England should be thankful to United and Sir Alex. We’ve produced two smashing players for them. I wasn’t always convinced about Danny and Tom. Now I’ve seen them at close quarters….you can easily see the lads have a genuine talent. They can take this club on for the next 10 years.

  34. wayne says:

    @kanchelskis can i be in charge of the paypal account

  35. Costas says:


    Tevez had the same problem in his last year for us didn’t he? Like I said, we will never know the truth. Maybe the interviewer revealed more than Kus wanted him to.

    That’s a HUGE amount of fans, but I was hoping we had 6 mil more. ;)

  36. denton davey says:

    Cedars @ 12:33: “may not always agree but that’s fine”

    Me, too.

    What I most enjoy about Scott’s blog is the chance to connect with people in faraway places – like Greece, Lebanon, India, and Iowa (!) – who share my passion but cordially agree/disagree with my opinions, some of which are half-baked but all of which are put forward in the expectation of civil discussion.

    It is, of course, great fun to follow TheLads in their current, astonishing run to glory. AND it’s wonderfully perplexing to try to “think along with” SAF whose team-selection isn’t always perfect but is always exhilirating and creates plenty of opportunities for second-guessing by those of us outside-the-inside, as it were.

  37. wayne says:

    @Costas would be the appropriate amount mate,yes i think there’s alot lost in translation when it comes to Tevez

  38. denton davey says:

    nm @ 13:12: “I really do think some are talking about Fletch as though he is finished.”

    Not me, m8. I’m a big, big fan of DarrenFletcherinho.

    He’s been in-and-out of the first team for a decade and he’s still just 26/27.

    DarrenFletcherinho was an awesome player in the 2008/2009 season, leading up to the CL final in Rome when he was banished by a really silly example of EuroReffing. I can’t wait for him to re-gain his “football genius” mode.

  39. SAFrican says:

    Thanks, amazing video! Tearing up just thinking about Duncan, what a terrible loss. Jones has big boots to fill but he’ll be a massive part of our future I’m sure!

  40. SAFrican says:

    @Costas Just read about the Newcastle story. Lol what a joke…Sports Direct Arena.
    Breaking News: Old Trafford to be renamed AON Superdome!

  41. CedarsDevil says:


    Pleasure, glad you enjoyed it…. Hope others who watched it did as well

  42. FletchTHEMAN says:

    Georgie was THE BEST !
    All time favorite player United player. Bit of a wounded soul to be fair.

    If your best United 11 doesn’t have him then you just don’t understand.
    Messi is the spanish Georgie Best.

  43. FletchTHEMAN says:

    Meant to follow last with hope that Cleverley grows into this type of untouchable player.
    I feel he will be good, but likely not quite “that” good. Still, one can always hope. Look at Ronaldo for comparisons about how players come into it around 24.

    Come on Tom!

  44. WillieRedNut says:

    Messi is the Northern Irish Best!

  45. CedarsDevil says:


    Any all time 11 with out Best would be silly, or even Robbo for that matter….. Regarding my video on Edwards, it was a mere tribute that he deserves, an emotional one at that…. I never stated that he was the best, perhaps if he lived long enough he may have been….

    I could be wrong but that is how I read your post buddy, as some sort of a response to me!

  46. waro says:

    International break is killing me. Especially friendlies, it’s rare to have competitive games.

  47. Ancha says:

    samuel – united WE stand

    Watch 2008-09 review video before spouting that shit. Fletcher was also in the PFA team of that year and he was simply brilliant at both ends of the pitch. As someone already pointed due to some reasons his form dipped. But after watching last two PL games I’m confident that he will be back to his best, if he continues at this rate and then let’s see what you will say.


    thanks for the video mate….nice to see it again…

  48. Gandalf says:

    Very exciting to see young players emerge from our youth setup – I hope Tom and Danny can prove to be mainstays in our team for many years – there is definitely more to come from them.

    On the stadium renaming thingy – I do not understand why anyone would pay insane amount of money to rename a stadium?! What exactly do these sponsors of new names get? Any commercial experts here?

    It really sounds silly to me – who would want to take away a traditional name and replace with etihad and sports direct. jeez, you couldn’t make this up!

  49. Paul Parker says:

    Anderson and Cleverly, the best midfield pairing I’ve seen in years. After hitting form at the end of last season, and having his first pre-season, the partnership Ando struck up with Cleverly has been the highlight of the season so far imo. Two young players not afraid to keep possession in the middle and work the ball. I know some people thought the pairing left us vulnerable, but thats what 4 defender and a keeper are for. We needed time to really settle the team and Kevin Davies fucked all that right up.

    Still, I still look forward to seeing those two back in the middle of the park, as without doubt they are the best pairing we have actually SEEN for a long time. That Welbeck fella ain’t half bad either.


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