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Carrick hails Welbeck impact

Michael Carrick has declared himself a "massive fan" of his Manchester United and England team-mate Danny Welbeck and said he has long had high expectations of the striker.

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Welbeck doubled his England tally with a brace in Friday's 5-0 win over San Marino and Carrick believes he can make goals as well as score them.

"I am a massive fan," said the midfielder. "I am probably a bit biased because of the United connection but ever since I have seen Danny I have been a huge fan and I expected big things of him. He has had a terrific couple of years now."

Welbeck partnered Wayne Rooney for his country on Friday and cemented a place alongside the Liverpudlian at club level last season. But while United's summer signing of Robin van Persie appeared a blow to the 21-year-old, Carrick says Welbeck has the versatility to prosper in several different roles.

He added: "People were looking at him when we signed van Persie saying 'where is his position, where is he going to fit in?' But he showed he is still a major part of it. We have got so much strength, but he has been terrific, and he was terrific again on Friday against San Marino. If he keeps performing like that he is only going to get better.

"He can create and score goals. He can play different positions, he can play wide, he can play up top and he is a real talent. But he is modest too, which is what you'd expect coming through the ranks at United."

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