Manchester United spent $66 million on Fred’s transfer from Shakhtar Donetsk in June but he has appeared in just seven Premier League matches.

Jose Mourinho suggested on Friday that Man United must get stronger defensively before he is ready to give Fred enough play time.

The Brazilian midfielder, who has not featured in any of Red Devils’ past four league matches, has lost his place in the Brazil National Team after struggling to impress at Old Trafford.

Mourinho said that Fred’s time will come, but does not believe the Brazilian is yet ready to play regularly in the Premier League.

“Step by step, you have also other players in other clubs that needed their time and you have some of them that played even less than what Fred is playing,” said Mourinho.

“I think that when the team is defensively stronger and doesn’t need in midfield people who are more worried about giving balance in the team than creativity, and the day we are stronger defensively, then the horizons change for Fred.”

United are now sitting in 8th place on the Premier League table with 23 points and a goal difference of minus one.

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