Danny Murphy reckons Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may need to have a discreet chat with Bruno Fernandes in order to stamp a bad habit out of his game.
The January signing from Sporting Lisbon has hit the ground running since an initial £47m switch. Fernandes was on target on Friday from the penalty spot to earn a 1-1 draw at Tottenham. It ensures he remains unbeaten since signing for United.
United may also have won the game when referee Jon Moss awarded a late penalty only for VAR to overturn the decision. The decision came after Eric Dier was adjudged to have fouled Fernandes in the box.
But replays showed Fernandes took a cheeky tumble and Murphy reckons Solskjaer needs to ask him to cut out the play-acting.
“But if you hate diving with a passion like I do, he has to be called out for conning referee Jonathan Moss by leaning into Eric Dier and then falling over.
“From a football point of view, Bruno was terrific again.
“I’ve eulogised about his quality before and it didn’t look as though the break had hampered him at all. You could clearly see how important he’s already become to this United team, pulling the strings.
“But no matter how good you are, if you make a habit of trying to win penalties and free-kicks, you won’t be admired in the same way.
“At Spurs, he deserved a yellow card for his tumble and as a fan of his I don’t want to see him start doing that. I’m sure Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will have a word with him about it, and he should do.
“It was right VAR overturned the original penalty decision that would have given United the chance of a late winner, but I agree with Jose Mourinho and don’t know why action wasn’t then taken against Fernandes.
“I’m hoping he will be embarrassed if he looks back. He doesn’t need to indulge in diving and gain a reputation for being public enemy No 1. He is talented enough to win matches and make himself a hero without such antics.”
Fernandes himself accepted the decision to overturn the penalty.
“We need to look at the Champions League,” he added. “At the end I kicked the ball and then found his foot. The VAR is here to help, if it says no penalty we have to accept.”
FERNANDES DISCUSSES POGBA PARTNERSHIP
Fernandes gave an insight into his connection with Paul Pogba on Friday night – and it may give United fans plenty of hope.
“We did very well,” Fernandes told Sky Sports. “It was a difficult game.
“They scored on the counter but we were in the game. We had a lot of chances.
“We want to win every game bit a good result. After a long stop, we did very well.
“When we train in groups, I trained with Paul Pogba. I found a good connection with everyone though. Paul won the penalty and I kicked it.”