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Manchester United reportedly chasing Bruno Fernandes as a replacement for Ander Herrera

James Reeve
CONTRIBUTOR
Feature
1.68K   //    11 May 2019, 07:49 IST

Sporting CP v Empoli FC - Pre-Season Friendly
Sporting CP v Empoli FC - Pre-Season Friendly

Reports have emerged that suggest Manchester United have taken an interest in Sporting Lisbon midfielder Bruno Fernandes.

According to ESPN, United have joined rivals Manchester City as potential suitors for the Portgual international, with a view to making him the long-term replacement for Ander Herrera.

Herrera looks set to depart Old Trafford for Paris Saint-Germain after five seasons with the club, leaving manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer with a gap in the centre of midfield that needs filling.

It's easy to see why Fernandes would command so much interest after the 24-year-old has dominated in Liga NOS this season.

In 31 league appearances, Fernandes has been involved in an astonishing 32 goals for the club - scoring 19 of his own from midfield.

The central midfielder has flexibility to his game and has played in almost every midfield position this season, but certainly appears most comfortable in the middle of the pitch.

Despite regularly playing a deeper role, Fernandes has averaged 3.2 shots per game and has contributed around 54 passes on average - with 3.2 of them being key passes.

He also contributes to the defensive side of the game, despite clearly being more of an attack-minded player, putting in 1.7 tackles per game - though he is also caught out with 1.6 fouls per game, which have led to eight yellow cards this season.

If United do chase Fernandes' signature, they will likely need to pay a significant transfer fee to acquire him and could find themselves involved in a bidding war - especially if rivals City continue to show real interest in the midfielder.

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Replacing Herrera will be a top priority of Solskjaer, who will be determined to impress as manager of the club he holds so closely to his heart.

With Fernandes' production in Portugal and his relatively young age of 24, he could be the ideal replacement for the 29-year-old Spaniard and could give Solskjaer a really talented piece to build around.

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