• Premier League

Moyes: Januzaj can learn from Messi

ESPN staff
November 5, 2013 « McCoy seals landmark 4,000th win | Chartbeat test »
David Moyes before his big Champions League clash

Manchester United boss David Moyes has urged Adnan Januzaj to learn from Barcelona's Lionel Messi as he continues to be targeted by opposition defenders.

Fulham defender Sascha Riether was charged with violent conduct after appearing to stamp on Januzaj during United's 3-1 win at Craven Cottage on Sunday, with the incident one of many challenges involving the youngster.

Moyes insists Januzaj must become accustomed to receiving special treatment and believes he will do well to follow Messi's example.

"He only needs to look at Lionel Messi who is probably the best in the world at getting kicked, getting up and getting on with it and continuing to produce magic all the time," Moyes said. "I'm not in any way comparing Adnan to Lionel Messi, but I'm certainly saying the way Lionel Messi gets up after being kicked, we hope that's the way Adnan continues to behave too."

Riether was charged retrospectively by the Football Association and although Moyes admitted he didn't see the incident during the match, he has called for referees to protect Januzaj.

"I hadn't seen it until after the game, the view from the dugout made it impossible to see, but it's a bad stamp and it does look deliberate but that's for the referee to deal with on the day as far as I'm concerned," he added.

"Januzaj has had an incredible impact on United this season in a short space of time but has found himself constantly fouled as teams try to stop his searing runs through the park.

"I do think Adnan is going to need a little bit of protection or we are going to find he is getting kicked up and down. I do think he deserves a little bit more than he is getting at this time.

"We have spoken to him about it, I have got to say he gets kicked up and down in training every day and gets on with it. He's learned from the good professionals that he's got to get on with it.

"It's not a case of asking for protection but we're just saying that somewhere along the line if he is going to continue playing in fashion and style we want he'll need to get protection from it.

"But we'll never be asking for any, it's up to referees to do what they think is right."

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