Tue. Oct 20th, 2020

Bruno Fernandes admits he could share Man United penalty duties with Marcus Rashford

5 min read

Bruno Fernandes has today opened up on the spot-kick pecking order at Manchester United.

Fernandes dazzling

Attacking midfielder Fernandes of course made the move to Old Trafford on transfer deadline day this past January.

And to say that he has since gone on to have a positive impact on Manchester United’s fortunes would be putting it very, very lightly.

The Portuguese international has played an absolutely starring role for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men since his arrival, having added a new dimension of guile and creativity to the club’s midfield.

All told, across 24 appearances in United’s colours, Fernandes has directly contributed to 21 goals.

Even more crucially, though, has been the fact that the former Sampdoria man’s influence has also led to an upturn in results, with the Red Devils’ first Premier League defeat since January having come last weekend.

‘Not a problem’

One frequent criticism which (despite being largely out of his control) has been aimed in Fernandes’ direction on the back of his first half-season in England, though, surrounds the number of the midfielder’s goals which have come from the penalty spot.

It became something of a running joke across social media to poke fun at Manchester United for the frequency with which the Red Devils were awarded spot-kicks in 2019/20, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men having gone on to set a new Premier League record:

Fernandes, lethal from 12 yards, was inevitably the main beneficiary over the second half of the season, with the Portuguese yet to miss a penalty in the club’s colours.

As such, speaking earlier today, he was drawn on the spot-kick situation at Old Trafford, with a particular emphasis on pecking order.

Marcus Rashford had of course been the Reds’ first-choice from the spot before Fernandes’ arrival, though the English international did not always prove as reliable.

Fernandes himself, however, has admitted that he remains open to sharing the responsibility with Rashford, with the former Sporting man more concerned with whether United’s penalties contribute towards a positive result:

‘It doesn’t matter if I take penalties. We have a lot of qualities in the team, like I’ve said before. I already talked with some players.’

‘Rashy was the guy who took the penalties, so I tell him, ‘when you feel confident, if you want to take the penalty, for me, it is not a problem.’ I will not fight.’

Bruno Fernandes

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – MARCH 08: Bruno Fernandes of Manchester United gestures during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Manchester City at Old Trafford on March 8, 2020 in Manchester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Daniel Chesterton/Offside/Offside via Getty Images)

‘I feel confident with penalties and I want to take them but, if someone comes to me to ask to take a penalty, I will not fight every time, just to take a penalty.’

‘In that moment, I can be tired or not prepared to take a penalty and I can say easily, ‘you take it.’

‘The most important thing is scoring for Manchester United. It doesn’t matter if it is Bruno or someone else.’

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