Bruno Fernandes has caused quite a stir in the transfer market becoming a potential target for major clubs, especially, Manchester United. Before we step further, who is Bruno Fernandes? And why is he a target for Manchester United? Let us take a look at his profile.
Who is Bruno Fernandes?
The 25-year old Portuguese footballer, Bruno Fernandes operates as a central attacking midfielder for Sporting Lisbon - a club in Portugal's football league, Primeira Liga.
Fernandes started his professional career in Italy, amassing Serie A totals of 119 matches and 15 goals for Udinese and Sampdoria after playing for Novara in Italy's second division league - Serie B.
It was in 2017 when the Portuguese star decided to head back home and play for Sporting Lisbon. The club signed him for £8.5 million reportedly, and a buyout clause of £100m.
Fernandes was elected Primeira Liga Player of the Year in his first two seasons and won the 2018-19 Taca de Portugal. In 2018-19, Fernandes scored 20 goals in 33 appearances. Since 2012, his total goals and assists tally is 88 and 69 respectively.
Proving his attacking abilities in the league, Fernandes bagged himself a spot in the national team and played for Portugal in 2016 Summer Olympics and 2018 FIFA World Cup.
In the current season, Fernandes has 8 goals and 7 assists in 15 league appearances whereas, an additional 5 goals and 3 assists in five Europa League matches.
Why does Manchester United need Bruno Fernandes?
Coming back to Manchester United, the club's shape is rather in dismay due to lack of creative midfield options. With out-of-form and injured midfielders, United fancy a vital player to generate enough chances and increase the conversion rate. The current midfielder's stats in the league will prove just why United need a player like Bruno Fernandes.
Paul Pogba, the French midfielder is out for another 3-4 weeks due to an injury which will require surgery. Apart from that, Pogba has only 2 assists to his name in 7 appearances. Scottish midfielder Scott McTominay is also ruled out until February due to an injury.
Fred and Jesse Lingard have neither scored nor assisted in 18 league games, which is quite disappointing for both, club and fans.
Welsh midfielder Daniel James has 3 goals and 6 assists in 21 games whereas Andreas Pereira has 1 goal and 3 assists in 19 games.
Juan Mata, the Spaniard has assisted only twice in 13 games.
Bruno Fernandes has proved his versatility as a midfielder who can score and slice his passes through the defence and also drop back when needed. As United currently portray a defensive midfield strategy, the return of Pogba and McTominay could bring about a great deal in the attacking third of the midfield.
According to Sky Sports, United are close to signing the midfielder, although Sporting are trying to get a good deal for their side in the exchange. Reports suggest that Andreas Pereira could be a part of the deal. Fernandes was also spotted bidding farewell to Sporting fans after a 3-1 victory against Sebutal in which the midfielder bagged himself a brace.