New rumours come out everyday and why would Friday be any different? Manchester United are linked once again with Bruno Fernandes and today we will be talking about that potential move. Metro wrote about the situation, claiming Manchester United are hopeful that they can complete a deal to sign Sporting midfielder Bruno Fernandes by the end of next week, according to reports in Portugal.
Bruno Fernandes is 24 years old and has been Sporting’s best player this season. He scored staggering 29 goals and added mouthwatering 17 assists in 48 appearances. Sporting and Fernandes won Taca de Portugal, the national cup, as they beat Porto on penalties in the final some 10 days ago. Manchester United are not the only team interested in the player, with Man City reportedly also taking a closer look. However, it looks like the Devils could be doing their best to snap up the player before any other club makes a serious offer.
A Bola claim that Man United are the favourites right now, even though City have sent a 55 million euro offer for the player recently. So what do we need to know about Bruno Fernandes?
The Portuguese is a central midfielder with a licence to roam forwards, playing in Pep Guardiola’s favourite ‘free eight’ role, similar to what David Silva, Kevin De Bruyne and others have been offering to the champions of England. He made 33 appearances in Liga NOS, spending 2942 minutes on the pitch. During that time, he scored 20 goals and 13 assists for Sporting. That is such a great feat that he was the second best goalscorer and second best assist-maker in the whole division in 2018-19, behind Haris Seferovic and Pizzi respectively. All of that from the middle of the park.
Therefore, Fernandes averaged 0.61 goals per 90 and 0.40 assists per 90. That is exactly one goal per 90 minutes spent on the pitch that comes from the central midfielder. He has been hugely important for his team, having a hand in 46 per cent of all Sporting’s league goals.
But Man United would not be getting a player with such numbers. First of all, this was a freakish season and secondly, it happened in Portugal. It is a strong league, but not even close to Premier League and it is certain his numbers would have “calmed down” if he was to play for Man United next season.
He likes to do many things. He is great at creating chances, but he also likes to shoot and arrive late into the box. The Portuguese is dynamic, but also technically sound. He averaged 3.7 shots per 90 in Liga NOS and 2.0 in Europa League, both great for a central midfielder. In fact, he shoots more often than Romelu Lukaku.
His creation of 3.2 key passes per 90 is marvelous and it is obvious Fernandes could bring a very interesting set of skills. However, it will not be easy for United to actually get him. It is reported that the player’s release clause is sitting at 100 million euros and if two Manchester clubs were to bid for him, Sporting would definitely make a huge profit.
Devils do need players as talented as him, especially now that they are not in Champions League. But how far should the club go for him is up to Ed Woodward.