Manchester United: Sky Sports man raises doubts over Bruno Fernandes’ role at Old Trafford
Ex-Premier League footballer Darren Ambrose believes questions must be asked of Bruno Fernandes’ role as Manchester United captain – but not until the end of the season.
The Lowdown: Man United bounced back emphatically
Fernandes – much like many other Man United players – was caught up in the aftermath of the Red Devils’ 7-0 humbling at the hands of Liverpool over the last few days.
However, the Portugal international seemingly came in for the brunt of the criticism, mainly as he was seen sulking and accused of not putting in the effort during the game, which is hardly the best look for the club captain on the day.
The midfielder wasted no time in responding to his critics by starring on Thursday night against Real Betis, as BT Sport pundit Owen Hargreaves labelled him ‘unplayable‘ after getting his name on the scoresheet.
The Latest: Fernandes may not be captain material
The temperament and attitude that Fernandes showcased at Anfield has certainly raised questions about him and where he stands at Man United, and Ambrose believes he and Erik ten Hag need to have words come the end of the season.
He said: “I think this year, yes [Fernandes should still be captain]. If Harry Maguire’s not playing, yes. I believe you’ve got to keep the player onside, he’s a fantastic football player. [He] had a poor time against Liverpool, we know that.
“In the summer, that’s when questions need to be asked and I can almost certainly say we’ll be seeing a new captain at Manchester United at the start of next season.”
The Verdict: Ten Hag has a big decision to make
It won’t be the first time that Ten Hag has had to sit down with one of his senior players and have a difficult conversation as he did so with Maguire at the beginning of the year, with the defender dropped from the majority of first-team games this campaign.
Therefore, the Dutchman won’t likely be fazed by having a talk with Fernandes if he was to take the captain’s armband off him, especially if there is a ready-made replacement waiting in the wings, which there appears to be.
Man United certainly have a few leaders in their team, including Casemiro – who’s been widely praised for his impact this season – so he could likely slip on the armband and not feel the pressure of it, especially given the level at which he’s played during his career.