Hidetoshi Nakata has urged his fellow countryman Shinji Kagawa to stay at Old Trafford despite the lack of game time.
After failing to cement his place in the first team since joining the Red Devils in 2012, Kagawa has been strongly linked with a return to Borussia Dortmund this summer, but Nakata said he should resist the temptation to leave the club.
Speaking in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia at the Laureus World Sports Awards 2014, the former Japan captain said: "I don't think he should leave Manchester United. They are a good club, so he should stay and fight for his place."
"All footballers will have good and tough times [at some point in their careers]. I had the same problem too when I was in Italy," said Nakata, who played for Perugia, Roma, Parma, Bologna and Fiorentina in the Italian top flight between 1998 and 2005.
"If he wants to leave just because he is not getting a lot of playing time, it just won't be right," he added, suggesting that Kagawa should only leave United with his head held high.