Bruno Fernades has become a mainstay in Manchester United due to one major factor – consistency.
His consistency has made him to be involved directly in 34 goals in 35 appearances for the Red Devils (21 goals, 13 assists). This record shows that he has 16 goals more than any player at the club at the moment.
The stat is following his involvement in the teams’ 4-1 win over Istanbul Basaksehir at Old Trafford on Tuesday night.
Ahead of last night’s game, Man United boss, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says the club will have to find a way to cope without Fernandes at some stage this season. He would be forgiven for hoping he never has to find out.
How will Manchester United cope without Bruno Fernandes?
At this stage, can the Norwegian play without the Portuguese? that is a doubt. This is because his return rate speaks for itself. He couldn’t take the risk against the Turkish Champions.
United now need a point to guarantee their place in the knockout rounds of the Champions League. But their 4-1 win over the reigning Turkish champions is in no small part due to the impressive performance of their Portuguese midfielder.
Fernandes opened the scoring in the 7th minute. He got his brace in the 19th minute. He would have even scored his first Champions League hattrick for United but chose to give the ball to Marcus Rashford, who scored from the penalty spot.
Solksjaer had at his news conference on Monday, admitted that he will have to rest Fernandes during a breathless season. Due to the congested fixtures, there is little time for rest and recuperation for players.
But he Norwegian couldn’t take the risk and he started Fernandes 24 hours later and it paid off.
With nine goals already this season, and five in his last three games, one will wonder how Solkasjaer will give a break to a player he cannot do without?
“We see him every day in training and knew what we were going to get when we brought Bruno into the team.
“He’s a player who likes to take risks, he wants the team to win and do well and it shows today he can do more than just take penalties,” the coach said.
From the look of things, they only thing that can make Fernandes to be benched o not to be used at will be fatigue or injury and he is not suffering from either of the two at the moment.
The Portuguese has scored 21 goals in 35 appearances since joining from Sporting Lisbon in January and has reached 20 goals for United quicker than any other player.
Fernades is a leader and conductor on the pitch
Not looking at his importance to this United team in terms of numbers, Fernandes who later left the pitch for Mason Greenwood is known to be a leader on the pitch.
Such was seen after his 20-yard rocket that into the roof of the net to put United ahead. Fernandes was seen talking to Aaron Wan-Bissaka and then Victor Lindelof about their positioning.
He was later seen encouraging Harry Maguire after some calm defending in the far corner before turning to Edinson Cavani.
Maguire wears the team’s captain no doubt, but Fernandes is the conductor.
When United was awarded a penalty at the end of the first half, Fernandes gave up the chance to complete his hat trick and instead passed the ball to Rashford, who hadn’t scored for more than a month.
Rashford increased United’s goal to three at half-time of a Champions League fixture for the first time since beating Roma 7-1 in 2007 from the spot, which shows that Fernandes is putting team first before personal accolade.
Such noble act was witnessed against Everton as well. He could have scored a hattrick at the Goodison Park, but he squared the ball for Cavani to score his first United goal.
Therefore, Fernandes’ importance is beyonfd the numbers. Adde to it is his influnce on the pitch.
“Every player wants to score a hat trick, but after the last Premier League game I told Rashy the next one you will take and so I remembered that.
“And I remembered that Rashy is one of the top scorers in the Champions League so I think it will be important for him to keep going there and to take that confidence. It doesn’t matter who takes the penalties. The most important thing is scoring. The team scores so when the team scores I score, too,” Fernandes said afterward.
That summed it up from a team player. It will be a nightmare if Fernandes get injured.