The search for leadership is a priority for Ole in the rebuild of United. Young players, hungry for success with the discipline and maturity beyond their years. Bruno Fernandes is such a player. It is no secret that there are calls among fans and some club legends to the idea of the Portuguese playmaker taking Manchester United captaincy full-time. He has stood out the best of all United players in every match in the high and lows, giving his best for the badge.
Old habits die hard; the arrogance on the pitch minus the daring tackles, the former Sporting skipper is described as the new Roy Keane. Always demands more from his teammates, looking on his shoulder ready to dish out instructions, telling teammates to push in, and pointing to spots he needs them to be. He is a constant source of inspiration, something that has been lacking in United for some years now.
Bruno; United Captaincy Qualities
During his interview with talkSPORT, Rene Meulenteen believes Bruno can replace Maguire. “Bruno is an excellent choice because since he’s come to the club, he has given United what they were lacking. Some urgency, he plays with conviction, he plays with authority, he drives other players on. He’s a positive influence every time he steps on the pitch – and he’s not afraid to tell players when they don’t meet the standards. He’s got high standards about himself because you can see if he does miss a pass, he gets annoyed with himself, and he will be the same with other players. Although he will say it, he’s not a negative person.”
When asked why, he told talkSPORT:
“He’s a very positive influence in the dressing room, players look up to him because he has proved to be such an important player for the team for me, I can see that because he’s been very consistent. He plays every game; his performances are nine out of ten. He always has an impact on the game. You want to have players [where you can say], ‘he’s on the pitch, the captain’s on the pitch, he will carry us over the line”. Since his debut, United have scored 42 Premier League goals. Fernandes involved in 24 of those goals (13 goals, 10 assists, and 1 second assist).
Leadership is about making other people feel confident due to your presence and making sure your impact is felt. Bruno’s qualities were seen when he opted to assist Cavani rather than going for his first hattrick for the club. Bruno broke clear and slotted a pass to Cavani, who sealed the win. Helping the Uruguayan to his first goal in a United shirt.
He may not be wearing the armband, but his presence is always felt. When players hide after a bad performance, Bruno always says it as it is and doesn’t shy away from responsibility, not afraid to call his teammates. He is the leader United has ever needed.