Bruno Fernandes Told To Remove Controversial Part Of His Game
Bruno Fernandes continued his incredible form since joining Manchester United at the end of January as his penalty saved them from a loss against Spurs on Friday night, but Danny Murphy fears the midfielder will ruin his own reputation.
The former Sporting man was linked with a move to Old Trafford for over a year before Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side eventually snapped him up right at the end of the January transfer window.
Since then he has scored three and set up three in just six Premier League games, with his third goal coming in the 1-1 draw with Jose Mourinho's team.
Despite all the plaudits coming his way, former Liverpool midfielder Murphy is worried that his diving, which the Englishman believes led to a second penalty award for United, before VAR changed the decision, could be a problem.
"From a football point of view, Bruno was terrific again. I've eulogised about his quality before and it didn't look as though the break had hampered him at all. You could clearly see how important he's already become to this United team, pulling the strings," Murphy wrote in his Daily Mail column.
"But no matter how good you are or how well you speak off the pitch, if you make a habit of trying to win penalties and free-kicks, you won't be admired in the same way. At Spurs, he deserved a yellow card for his tumble and as a fan of his I don't want to see him start doing that. I'm sure Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will have a word with him about it, and he should do.
"It was right VAR overturned the original penalty decision that would have given United the chance of a late winner, but I agree with Jose Mourinho and don't know why action wasn't then taken against Fernandes.
"I'm hoping he will be embarrassed if he looks back. He doesn't need to indulge in diving and gain a reputation for being public enemy No 1. He is talented enough to win matches and make himself a hero without such antics."
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After the match Mourinho was very annoyed with the awarding of both penalties, saying, "I'm not happy with the penalty and I'm also not happy with the second penalty," he told Sky Sports. "I'm unhappy with the VAR. The referee can make a mistake and give a cheap penalty. But then the VAR is there to do a job.
"In the second penalty, l am unhappy with Moss because he didn't give the free-kick on Serge [in the build-up to the penalty award]. Then he gave a cheap penalty, a non-penalty, and in this case the VAR gave the truth."
In terms of praise Murphy turned his attention to the pairing of Fernandes with Paul Pogba, after the Frenchman's arrival as a substitute won the penalty, adding, "In footballing terms, it was interesting to see him and Paul Pogba dovetail for the latter stages after the Frenchman came off the bench.
"I think there is room for both men in the same midfield against most opposition, though I believe there would be a risk playing them together against a Liverpool or Manchester City because neither is naturally inclined to defend."
Does Fernandes have an issue with diving? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.