Jose Mourinho took a cheeky dig at Manchester United superstar Bruno Fernandes over the number of penalties scored by the 26-year-old. The Tottenham Hotspur manager has always been outspoken about rival players and managers and this is the second time the Portuguese brought up his compatriot's penalty-scoring record.
The former Manchester United coach made a remark on the same back in July towards the end of the 2019/20 Premier League campaign. He said;
"Bruno [Fernandes] came in, was fit, played very well, improved the Manchester United team and also proved to be a great penalty taker, one of the best in the world, because he had about 20 to score."
Mourinho did so once again at the weekend after his side's emphatic 3-0 win over Leeds United. His star man, Heung-Min Son, scored his 100th goal in Tottenham Hotspur colours and Mourinho praised the forward, albeit while taking a swipe at Manchester United's Fernandes.
Responding to a question regarding Son's landmark goal, Mourinho said;
"I'm very happy for him [Heung-Min Son], I'm very happy that now people realise the player he is. I think we all have to explain to people the person he is, too. To get the Puskas award, to be scoring 100 goals for Tottenham and to be maybe in the top three Premier League scorers without penalties."
"Some players score ten goals a season on penalties and I'm not speaking about Harry Kane, by the way."
Fernandes has had a stellar record at scoring penalties since joining Manchester United, having missed just once from the spot in his 16 attempts in a Red Devils shirt, which was against Karl Darlow away at Newcastle United.
The 26-year-old has five goals from the spot to his name this season, two more than Harry Kane and just one less than Jamie Vardy, who has converted a league-high six penalties.
Bruno Fernandes opens up on failed Spurs move ahead of Manchester United transfer
Ironically, Jose Mourinho could have been working with Fernandes at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium if his potential move hadn't fallen through. The Portuguese revealed that he was close to a move to Tottenham Hotspur but the move did not materialise because their offer was deemed too low.
The Manchester United superstar said;
"I was close to Tottenham. In the summer I was closer to Tottenham than Manchester [United]. Sporting [Lisbon] thought at that moment the proposal was not good enough, they thought they deserved more for a player like me. They wanted more money. I was not mad, I was sad."
"I thought dream of coming to the Premier League was not happening. At the time, the dream to come to the Premier League, to a club like Tottenham was an amazing proposal. But everything has a purpose. Maybe at that time, I didn’t go to Tottenham because something special was coming. Waiting worked better because I got to put two dreams together – to play in the Premier League and for Manchester United."
Fernandes has been central to Manchester United's success since his arrival and is regarded as one of the best players in the Premier League at the moment.
Published 03 Jan 2021, 22:47 IST