Manchester United new boy Bruno Fernandes has multiple similar facets to his game as one of the club’s greatest-ever midfielders in Paul Scholes, according to Treble-winning defender Jaap Stam.
Fernandes secured a £68million move to Manchester United after agreeing a five-and-a-half year deal last month, but not after months of speculation.
United will pay £46.6million up-front, with a further £8.5m dependent on Champions League qualification and appearances by the player. The final bill could rise by a further £12.7million based on a number of further clauses based on Fernandes’ achievements over the long term.
And while the Portuguese star has yet to score in his two appearances for United, he does have an assist to his name after creating Harry Maguire’s goal against Chelsea on Monday, and has clearly caught the eye in both his outings.
The addition of Fernandes in their midfield looks to be exactly what Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side needs as they bid to secure Champions League football next term and, speaking to 888Sport, Stam can see obviously comparisons between the Portuguese star and Scholes, whom won 11 Premier League titles in a 20-year United career.
“I think Fernandes is a bit similar to Scholesy,” Stam said. “He’s always looking to play forward.
“He’s got the ability to score. He’s got a great free-kick. He’s got a great pass. He is always looking to get into certain areas to get onto the ball and be influential in the game.
“He’s not exactly the same. Scholesy was a bit more aggressive without the ball. But in football intelligence he is similar to Paul Scholes.”
Fernandes arrival to clear Paul Pogba exit
Stam also had his say on the ongoing saga with club record signing Paul Pogba, who is expected to leave in the summer and is the subject of a player-exchange approach from Juventus.
“The difficult thing is that agents are always pressing on behalf of their players,” Stam added.
“But players always want to play themselves, especially when you’re a big player and a manager tells you that you’re not going to play. You then want to go somewhere else and play for another club.
“And if you’re a big player like Pogba is there are always teams asking for you and who want to sign you. That makes things difficult for the manager who has to keep the player calm and make him feel happy and appreciated.
“This is especially true these days with all the money in football.
“It’s an extra dimension to the actual football and with all the money around every player want to be thought of as the best.
“But they need to look at the big picture and look at what the club wants to do and how they want to play.”