Bruno Fernandes may hinder more than help new Manchester United boss Ralf Rangnick after a report claimed his dip in form might be a sign of things to come.
Fernandes, 27, hit the ground running following his arrival at Manchester United in January, 2020. The Portuguese often dragged his side over the finish line and produced a goalscoring return that would be the envy of many forwards within the game.
However, since the return of Cristiano Ronaldo to Old Trafford this seasom, Fernandes’ form has dipped.
The attacker has plundered six vital assists in the Champions League. But his league form has paled in comparison to what he previously produced.
Fernandes has notched just four goals and three assists on the domestic front. The Independent now suggest his lower levels of performance may not be a temporary blip.
The newspaper note Fernandes did not finish the contest against Chelsea on Sunday despite the match being in the balance. Fernandes was replaced by Donny Van de Beek for the game’s closing stages.
Fernandes laboured throughout the match. And while they acknowledge he was played out of position, the article claims his propensity to try the ‘speculative’ and create ‘social media moments’ is only tolerable when they come off – something that has not happened with great frequency lately.
The ‘wear and tear’ of being United’s go-to man for 18 months is speculated as a reason behind his slump.
However, the Independent cite a ‘well-placed source’ that has a more worrying view.
Fernandes found out, or just a blip?
Fernandes was monitored by all of the ‘Big Six’ clubs prior to his move to United. It was the Red Devils that ultimately pulled the trigger, though that move came after ‘initial hesitation’.
The source is quoted as saying: “You can see why. And, with the way the Premier League works, you usually get one year before everyone figures you out.”
Whether Fernandes is simply in a lull or the league’s defences have got to grips with the Portuguese, only time will tell.
New boss Rangnick will certainly be hoping it is the former, and the article concludes the German’s more frenetic playing style could ultimately bring the best out of Fernandes once more.
Finer details of Rangnick’s remit revealed
Meanwhile, the finer details of Ralf Rangnick’s role, influence and future at Old Trafford have been revealed.
Trusted transfer guru Fabrizio Romano tweeted about the appointment prior to United’s official confirmation.
Romano noted Rangnick’s remit will extend beyond just matters on the field during his time in charge.
Given Rangnick will move upstairs when his managerial stint concludes, it stands to reason he will have a say on off-field matters during his spell in the hot-seat.
Furthermore, he will have a say on players whose contracts are expiring in the summer. Most notably, that includes Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard.