Man Utd star feels he ‘fits much better’ at Barcelona as Flick eyes ‘cheaper’ option to Man City man

Joe Williams
Man Utd midfielder Bruno Fernandes
Bruno Fernandes has been linked with a move to Barcelona.

Man Utd captain Bruno Fernandes thinks he would suit Barcelona’s system better under Hansi Flick amid transfer interest, according to reports.

The Portugal international sparked rumours over his future at Old Trafford following an ambiguous set of comments last month, which suggested he could leave Man Utd depending on how talks with the club went.

In an interview since he insisted that he wants to stay at the club but there have still been rumours of interest from other clubs.

A report over the weekend claimed that his agent, Miguel Pinho, met up with Barcelona and Bayern Munich to discuss a potential move away from Man Utd.

And now reports in Spain describe Barcelona’s pursuit of Fernandes as an ‘unexpected operation’ with the Portuguese midfielder ‘already offered to Joan Laporta and Deco through his representative’ last week.

Fernandes ‘is studying the idea of ​​packing his bags to be able to join a team where he can fight for titles’ and new Man Utd co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe ‘does not consider the Portuguese international indispensable’.

Barcelona had not shown strong interest up until now but ‘everything has changed since the dismissal of Xavi and the hiring of’ Flick as his replacement.

The 29-year-old was ‘ruled out’ by Xavi and the Spaniard ‘had asked the board to focus on signing Bernardo Silva from Manchester City’ but former Bayern Munich and Germany coach Flick is ‘more in favour of betting on the Red Devils’ star’.

It is believed Fernandes ‘would be slightly cheaper’ than Silva anyway and the Man Utd captain ‘believes that he fits much better into Barça’s system’.

The €50m that Man Utd are asking for ‘is not outrageous’ to Barcelona but they could have to compete with German giants Bayern Munich.

Earlier today, transfer expert Fabrizio Romano confirmed that contacts did take place between Fernandes’ agent and Barcelona.

Romano wrote in his Caught Offside column: “There’s been a lot written again about the future of Bruno Fernandes at Manchester United, with the Portuguese press claiming that there have been some contacts with both Barcelona and Bayern Munich, and that approaches could come soon. There will inevitably be a lot written about this, so I wanted to clarify my current understanding of the situation here.

“The reality is that Fernandes’ agent Miguel Pinho has met with some European top clubs last week. Contacts took place, but the player remains focused on Man United and his exit is not something decided at this point. It will also depend on Man United’s new project, what happens with the manager, what they will ‘present’ to Bruno in new meeting.

“It’s a stand-by moment between Fernandes and Man United, waiting to make final decision with a new contract for the player also being a possibility in case he decides to stay.”

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Fernandes has sometimes been criticised for his body language on the pitch, while many have doubted his role as captain – but former Man Utd striker Louis Saha thinks the Portuguese midfielder has shown he has the “material” to be skipper.

Saha said: “At this moment in time, he’s the only one who remains very creative, very consistent, he never hides, never complains. He’s playing his guts out, to try to do his best with the quality that he has and the kind of control that he can have on the pitch, it’s 200%.

“This is the material of a captain and whatever people might say, ‘yes back in the day it would have been like this or like that’, but as I said before, the team balance is not the same as it was 10 or 15 years ago, it’s nowhere near.

“So we can say whatever we want, but we are not in the dressing room every day and don’t understand how to socialise with the boys or how to gel with what the manager or assistant manager is going to say, and try to speak to the key players.

“All those things are captain materials that people tend to forget. And I think that some parts are expressed in the game where, individually, you have to prove yourself and be good on the day, but you can’t do everything alone.”

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