Manchester United midfielder Andreas Pereira claims he can play out wide as an orthodox winger in the same mould as club legend David Beckham next season.
The 23-year-old rose through the Old Trafford ranks at youth level before graduating to the senior squad in 2014, but he has struggled to earn regular playing time since.
The Belgian star took in loan spells at Granada and Valencia before returning to Manchester last summer, with a view to fighting for a spot in Jose Mourinho’s starting XI.
However, Pereira continued to find playing time hard to come by under the Portuguese and was still on the fringes of the action after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer came in halfway through the season.
Despite limited opportunities for the Red Devils in recent years, the midfielder signed a new four-year contract in June and he insists he is “ready” for a prominent role under Solskjaer in the 2019-20 campaign.
Pereira is keen to prove his versatility, as he told Four Four Two: “Last season I had some difficulties to overcome mentally.
“I was doing well, then I had a setback where I was out of the team. Then Ole gave me a chance, he spoke to me and explained that I was in his plans.
“I learned a lot, I’m ready to step up, I feel confident and the manager feels confident in me. Mentally and physically, I feel stronger each year.
“It’s my time to step up. I’m ready. As a No.8 or a No.10. I can play on the right-wing like Becks used to play, cut inside and get the early cross in. I have a lot to show.”
The Red Devils endured a nightmare end to last season, managing just two wins from their final 12 matches across all competitions.
Solskjaer’s side ended up finishing sixth in the Premier League, missing out on Champions League qualification while also failing to win a single piece of silverware.
Three wins out of three in pre-season has lifted the mood ahead of the new campaign in August and Pereira is adamant the team is now heading in the right direction.
“We felt like we were fading away, the training was not as sharp as it had been,” he added – as per Four Four Two.
“There was a lack of concentration. We had a very bad feeling after the last game last season (a home defeat to relegated Cardiff City).
“This season, when we started pre-season, we spoke with the manager.
“The training sessions are sharper; we have the new young players too. We know what we did wrong and we know what we have to do to improve.”