Manchester United are reportedly ready to revive their interest in Bruno Fernandes, who was linked with a move to Old Trafford in the summer.
According to Goal, Manchester United are set to restart their pursuit of Bruno Fernandes. It is believed that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is keen on boosting his squad in January with a new creative midfield and a move for the Sporting CP playmaker could be on the agenda for United, who have now begun a new scouting mission in Portugal.
The Red Devils have been linked with the likes of James Maddison and Christian Eriksen in recent months. But, it is unlikely that Manchester United will be able to land any of those two targets in the January transfer window. As a result, Fernandes has emerged as the desired alternative for Solskjaer.
The Portuguese international was linked with a move to Old Trafford in the summer, but the transfer to Manchester United never really materialised. In fact, the player ended up signing a contract extension with Sporting Lisbon, although that does not necessarily seal his long-term future at the club.
Fernandes was one of the best players in Europe last season, ending the campaign as the most lethal midfielder among the top seven leagues in the continent. His performances in the final third were also vital behind Portugal’s triumph in the UEFA Nations League in the summer.
The playmaker has been able to replicate his performances this season as well, scoring six goals in 14 league matches. He has also mustered seven assists, helping Sporting CP fight for the top four. Overall, Fernandes has been involved in 26 goals in 24 competitive matches in the 2019-20 campaign, which is quite an impressive statistic for any attacking midfielder.
Hence, the 25-year-old is a viable target for Manchester United. He can prove to be an upgrade over Jesse Lingard, who wasn’t involved in a single Premier League goal in 2019, and Juan Mata, who, at the age of 31, is nearing the final phase of his career.
Fernandes could be an ideal fit in the number ten slot in Solskjaer’s preferred 4-2-3-1 setup. The Portuguese international’s ability from long-range, coupled with his proficiency in set-pieces, could lift the burden off of Marcus Rashford, at least as far as productivity is concerned.
Moreover, the fact that Fernandes can feature in a deeper midfield role will help the Manchester United boss deal with the injury crisis in the middle of the park, seeing as Paul Pogba has missed a chunk of the campaign while Scott McTominay is currently nursing a knee problem.
That being said, Fernandes could prove to be a gamble too as the midfielder may struggle to adapt to the fast-paced nature of the Premier League. Hence, it will be interesting to see whether or not Manchester United do make a move for the Portuguese sensation this January.