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Mourinho explains how Fellaini won Man Utd fans over

13:09 GMT+3 21/01/2017
Marouane Fellaini Paul Pogba Manchester United
The Belgian has not always been a favourite with the Old Trafford faithful, but recent displays have highlighted the value of his versatility

Jose Mourinho believes “good performances” have helped to put Marouane Fellaini back in favour with Manchester United supporters.

The Belgium international has struggled to win over a sceptical fan base throughout his time at Old Trafford, having followed David Moyes through the gates from Everton in the summer of 2013.

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He showed during his time at Goodison Park that he is a capable Premier League performer, while he also boasts 74 senior caps for his country.

His style does not sit well with some United fans, though, with the big-haired midfielder more about graft than guile.

Fellaini is, however, seeing regular game time under a third permanent manager with the Red Devils, and Mourinho feels his versatility and work rate is also being recognised by those in the stands.

"I think they turned back in his favour after he went back to good performances," the Portuguese said.

"He's showing great character and the fans are showing great respect and great knowledge about his contribution.

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"In the last matches he has been very important for us. He played very well the last match he started, coming in and being important in other matches in the last 20, 25 minutes. He's contributing well and he's a player who can be very useful."

Pressed on what Fellaini brings to the United team, Mourinho added: "Depends on the situation. He can be more positional and more defensive. He can be more offensive and an extra man in the opposition box. He can be dangerous there. With me, he started the season and played some matches as a positional midfield player.

"In late matches when the team needed a goal, like against Middlesbrough, Liverpool, Hull City, he was playing in more offensive positions.

"He's a player who has a good understanding of the game and now I know him better than before I know where he can help the team."

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Fellaini has made 22 appearances in all competitions for United this season, gracing the Premier League, EFL Cup, Europa League and FA Cup.

He also recently opened his goal account for the campaign, with an important effort netted in a 2-0 victory over Hull City in the first leg of a League Cup semi-final clash.