Paul Scholes and Erik ten Hag agree on Facundo Pellistri verdict after Man Utd full debut

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The Manchester United attacker made his first start in Thursday’s Europa League win over Real Betis.

Paul Scholes and Erik ten Hag both felt Facundo Pellistri impressed on his first Manchester United start on Thursday.

The winger has made six appearances from the bench this season for the Red Devils but was handed his maiden start at the Benito Villamarin Stadium, as United won 1-0 against Real Betis in the second leg of their Europa League last-16 tie.

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Pellistri impressed with some dynamic dribbles while he also linked well with team-mates, especially in the first half. Pellistri hit the post with an effort just moments before half-time, which would have been his first-ever United goal.

Speaking after the game, Scholes was encouraged by the Uruguayan’s impact and opined that with Alejandro Garnacho facing a spell on the sidelines, Pellistri could have an important role to play in the final months of the season.

“I thought he did alright. He’s not played a lot of football but I thought he was quite lively going on the outside,” Scholes said during BT Sport’s post-match coverage. “A few early crosses I think he overhit possibly, but the team were a little bit like that, to be fair.

“But he was a real threat. I thought he was the one looking to create and be dangerous, hit the post - was a bit unlucky and it would have been nice for him to get his goal there.

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“He’s very direct, I don’t think you’ll see any fancy stuff from him. He will be direct, go towards goal and try and cross the balls for forwards in the box, and get shots on goal. I thought overall he was alright.

“He’s rapid,” the ex-midfielder added. “I think that could be his biggest strength. He’s going to be an asset now with Garnacho being out; Antony is ill - how long he’s going to be out, I don’t know. He [Pellistri] could be a real asset and not just from the bench. For his first full start I thought he did very well.”

Also speaking to BT, Ten Hag claimed Pellistri did well against Betis. “For Facundo, it is great to come in. He had some good comings,” opined the United boss.

“He has good performances in training but a game is different. In a start he has to come in, but you saw after some minutes he got belief and had some really good actions. Defending, he did his job. I am really pleased with his performance.”

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