'He'll give you the ball three or four times' - Watford striker Deeney reveals which Man Utd star they targeted in Premier League

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Troy Deeney Watford 2019-20
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The veteran forward picked out one Red Devils midfielder as a weak link that was exploited last season

Watford striker Troy Deeney has revealed that his side targeted midfielder Fred as Manchester United's weak link, claiming that the Brazilian gave the ball away "three or four times a game".

Fred joined Manchester United from Shakhtar Donetsk in 2018, moving to Old Trafford in a transfer that cost up to £52.5 million ($70m).

Having struggled initially under Jose Mourinho, the Brazilian has stepped up under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, appearing 48 times in all competitions last season.

Deeney's Watford got the best of Manchester United at Vicarage Road last season, although it was not enough to save them from relegation.

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Reflecting on that win, Deeney said that Watford made it a point to target the Brazilian midfielder as he was seen as a player whose mistakes would cost the Red Devils.

"Whenever you play against Fred - we certainly did it - you let him get it because he has to take three or four touches," he told talkSPORT.

"He doesn't know how to do one or two touches.

"Anyone that watches his game, he gets it facing the wrong way, turns, turns, chops, chops and he'll give you the ball three or four times a game."

When Darren Bent chimed in saying that it was the "blueprint to play against" the Man Utd midfielder, Deeney continued: "It's the truth. If you're anyone who studies football you'll know that, when teams are setting and they're waiting, you go and that one person is the trigger. 

"You're waiting for it to go and then you bounce off him."

Fred has made six appearances so far for Manchester United this season, including a start in Tuesday's 2-1 victory over Paris Saint-Germain in the Red Devils' Champions League group-stage opener.

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Next up for Man Utd is a return to Old Trafford as Fred and Co. take on Chelsea in a battle of Premier League contenders. 

Deeney, meanwhile, flirted with a Premier League return following Watford's relegation, but a move never came to fruition before the transfer deadline.

The forward, who was linked with Tottenham and West Brom, has made one appearance this season, coming off the bench during Watford's 1-0 win over Luton Town on September 26.

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