Patrice Evra has revealed that both he and Cristiano Ronaldo played at least some role in Manchester United opting to move for Bruno Fernandes.
Following weeks of rampant speculation, attacking midfielder Fernandes finally made the move to Old Trafford on transfer deadline day in January.
And whilst there was understandable excitement surrounding his arrival, few could have predicted just how immediate Fernandes’ impact on Manchester United’s fortunes would prove.
The Portuguese international has gone on to play a 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 22 appearances in United’s colours, Fernandes has directly contributed to 20 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 having not fallen to a single Premier League defeat since January.
💫 It’s been quite the return to football for our Portuguese magnifico! 💫
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 4, 2020
‘A good guy’
As outlined above, though, had it not been for the influence of a pair of former Manchester United stars, it is possible (albeit unlikely) that the Reds would, in the end, have opted against moving for Fernandes.
Speaking in an interview with the Guardian this weekend, Patrice Evra revealed that he was contacted by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ahead of United’s eventual decision to splash out on the Sporting CP standout.
In turn, the Frenchman texted Cristiano Ronaldo, who is of course an international teammate of Fernandes.
And, on the back of a ringing endorsement from the 5-time Ballon d’Or winner, Evra passed the message on to Solskjaer, with the rest, as they say, history:
‘United can’t challenge Liverpool or Man City. Not yet. There’s been massive damage but we’re moving in the right direction.’
‘When they wanted to sign Bruno Fernandes, Ole texted me. I asked for advice from Cristiano Ronaldo. Cristiano says: ‘Bruno’s a good guy and very professional.’
‘I say: ‘Ole, I’ve spoken with Cristiano. Let’s go for it.’ And Fernandes had a massive impact. Without him, I don’t think we would have qualified for the Champions League.’
This article was edited by Conor Laird.
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