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‘Working his socks off’: Robin van Persie lavishes praise on Manchester United youngster Danny Welbeck

By Chris Bailey

Hot-shot striker Robin van Persie may have bagged another goal in Manchester United’s victory against Liverpool on Sunday, but the Dutchman believes Danny Welbeck played a crucial role.

Welbeck – a surprise inclusion over Javier Hernandez who scored twice against Wigan Athletic in the Red Devils’ last Premier League outing – was named Man of the Match against his side’s bitter arch-rivals.

And while the England international did not find the net himself, Van Persie reserved special praise for a tireless performance from his strike partner

“He played really well. I think he was good in the combinations and played a big part in the build-up to the first goal, passing and moving to make space,” the Dutchman told MUTV.

“A couple of times he got the ball when they made a mistake. I got it one or two times when they misplaced the ball.

“He has been brilliant. He is still young and has been really good in training, working his socks off.

“He is a very positive guy who wants and loves to play football.”

Van Persie struck his tenth goal in as many games in the first-half but a header from Patrice Evra – deflected off Nemanja Vidic – ultimately ensured a United win following Daniel Sturridge’s consolation.

The ex-Arsenal forward believes it took a team effort to fend off Liverpool’s growing threat in the second-half and maintain a seven-point lead over title rivals Manchester City.

“Everybody felt the importance of this fixture during the week and we are really happy with the result. We had a good first half and it should have been more than 1-0 in my opinion,” said Van Persie.

“In the second half, Liverpool played for all or nothing with lots of attackers so we had to dig in and fight for each other, helping each other out where possible.

“We did that and we fought hard. We got the result we wanted.”

Picture courtesy of Stanislav Vedmid, with thanks

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