Paul Ince has sensationally accused Ole Gunnar Solskjaer of ‘blatantly lying’ to Donny van de Beek about his role at Manchester United, with the Dutchman still struggling for game time.
Van de Beek arrived at Old Trafford in the summer of 2020 but played just 511 minutes in the Premier League last season and has only made three appearances in all competitions this campaign.
The former Ajax star’s frustration reached a climax two weeks ago when he was caught on camera having to be consoled by team-mates and throwing his chewing gum down in frustration after being left on the bench against Villarreal.
Paul Ince has accused Ole Gunnar Solskjaer of ‘blatantly lying’ to United’s Donny van de Beek
Solskjaer has handed Van de Beek just three appearances in all competitions this campaign
Ince says Van de Beek should be ‘livid’ watching United’s other midfielders playing in front of him
But Ince, who played over 200 times for the Red Devils, has now accused Solskjaer of misleading Van de Beek over the amount of game time he would receive when trying to tempt him to sign from Ajax over 12 months ago.
The 53-year-old former England international told The Kelly and Wrighty Show: ‘If I’m going to buy a player, a top player from Ajax, the first thing I’m going to say is, ‘Am I going to play? Where do you see me fitting in, within the system, within the team?’
‘As a manager you have two choices – you can either tell the truth or not tell the truth. From what I’m seeing for the last year and a half, he’s not told Donny the truth, he hasn’t had any game time. He’s got £35million sitting on the bench.
‘I can hold my hands up if I’m on the bench and the team are winning and playing well. You can’t tell me that Fred and [Scott] McTominay are playing well week in and week out, and even [Paul] Pogba because they’re not.
‘But he seems to play them all the time, and I’m sitting there watching them play, I would be livid.
‘He’s been professional, he’s done everything by the book. Ole’s come out saying he’s in my plans, obviously he’s just blatantly lying, he has to move in January for the good of his career.’
Van de Beek’s career has stagnated since leaving Ajax for Old Trafford. He was a crucial player in the Dutch side’s run to the Champions League semi-finals in 2019 – and even scored in the first leg of that tie against Tottenham.
Van de Beek (centre) was furious in the Manchester United dugout after he was left to watch the action yet again against Villarreal last month
The Dutchman reacted a minute from time after failing to be used as a substitute for United – he threw his chewing gum away in disgust after seeing Ferd and Jesse Lingard (front) come on
His frustration at not playing appeared to reach boiling point a few weeks ago when he was not brought on against Villarreal, despite United desperately needing a goal.
They eventually did come from behind in the Champions League clash to win but Van de Beek could not contain his anger when Jesse Lingard and Fred were brought on instead with a minute to go.
Consoled by team-mates Dean Henderson from behind and Eric Bailly to his left, Van de Beek covered his face with his hand before appearing to take out chewing gum from his mouth and throw it down into the United technical area.
Solskjaer said in the aftermath that he sympathises with Van de Beek but wants him to channel it in a positive way.
‘I manage a squad full of international footballers, competitive footballers, who want to make a difference, to play,’ said the United boss.
‘They all want to be on the pitch, of course they do. Donny was ready to come, as all players should be. I have been a sub more than anyone in this club probably, I must have the record, and you have to be ready all the time.
As Sportsmail reported last month, Van de Beek will make another attempt to leave in January
‘I have been not very happy a few times, but that is just a decision the manager makes. Alex (Telles) was coming off as a left-back and Fred did that job well.
‘I understand the frustration, every player is keen to play, that has to built into energy and determination for when you come on. Then show me. That is not just Donny, all the players.’
As Sportsmail reported last month, Van de Beek is ready to make another attempt to leave Manchester United in January amid links to both newly-rich Newcastle and Everton.
The 24-year-old was keen on a loan move to Goodison Park in the summer after his representatives held talks with the Merseyside club but it was blocked by United on deadline day.
Now Van de Beek will renew his efforts to find another club in the January transfer window after seeing no improvement in his situation despite assurances from Solskjaer that he would play more.