90 touches, 5 tackles: £26m-rated Man Utd monster outshone Fernandes to steal the show – opinion
It goes without saying that Bruno Fernandes is Manchester United’s best player by a mile.
The Portuguese magnifico, who joined the Red Devils on a five-and-a-half year deal from Sporting Lisbon in January, has been a total revelation at Old Trafford.
Heading into the Champions League clash with Istanbul Basaksehir, Fernandes had scored three goals and supplied an assist in his past three games in all competitions, including a brace against Everton at Goodison Park.
But whilst the Portugal international received most of the plaudits, it was Fred who stole the show on Tuesday night with an underrated display.
Solskjaer can be thrilled with his team as they won most of their one-on-one battles all over the pitch but perhaps none more so than in the midfield.
Preferred to Paul Pogba once again, the former Brazil international, who is currently valued at €30m (£26m) via CIES, cruised the midfield battle and it allowed Solskjaer’s side to build on Fernandes’ double to make it an easy win to ensure that they stayed top of Group H on nine points from four games, with Paris Saint-Germain in second place.
As per SofaScore, the 27-year-old made five tackles, one interception and won seven out of 12 duels overall (58%). His 90 touches in total were the highest out of any United player, whilst he was fouled once, and provided 65 out of 74 passes and three accurate long balls, which shows that he was the most vital cog as they avenged their defeat to Istanbul earlier this month.
The Manchester Evening News gave him a high grade of 7/10 for his efforts, with Samuel Luckhurst noting ‘the Brazilian’s selection reinforced his importance and United are simply a better side with Fred as one of the midfield two.’
Confident on the ball and comfortable in possession, Fred picked the right moments to keep it short and simple or burst into advanced areas with his ball-carrying ability.
Fernandes may have been the talk of the town for his brace, but the Brazilian was back to his very best against Istanbul.
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Source: Football – Football Fan Cast