EPL: Manchester United are getting tired of Bruno Fernandes

Manchester United fans are increasingly frustrated with Bruno Fernandes’ theatrics on the pitch and a club legend branded him a ‘disgrace’ against Liverpool, writes HENRY WINTER.

Football must be careful not to make Bruno Fernandes the scapegoat for all the ills of the game when he is just a symptom of a general malaise. The Manchester United captain is a fine footballer, a natural entertainer, scoring more than one goal every three games and providing an assist every four, but his behavior at Anfield on Sunday inevitably exacerbates the long-standing debate over spirit of the game.

Has the game reached a turning point with behaviors like Fernandes, faking injuries, moaning and jumping? Or will such playmanship simply be accepted with a shrug as part of the antics roadshow that is making the Premier League the most obsessed league in the world?

Is it time to give umpires the option to get stronger with strops, book them quicker or have them wait longer on the touchline before they can be reinstated? Or should the English game consider heavier action and look at the process in the US where a player has 15 seconds to get up or be taken away by medical staff and stays out for three minutes? It is worth considering. Fair play counts. The behavior of those in the elite stadiums, good or bad, reverberates at grass-roots level and on pitches.

Nobody with experience on the English football circuit, where the winner takes all, is the only show in town that really holds its breath for the Corinthian spirit to conquer the tumblers and time wasters. But maybe some help from fans – and Uncle Sam – is on hand.

Judging from the forums and phone calls, the reaction from many United fans was embarrassing for their captain. Partly looking for a lightning rod for their anger after their agony at Anfield, partly they see Fernandes’ behavior as damaging to the team and infecting others with a sense of defeatism.

Mirroring the views of many of the club’s supporters, Gary Neville summed up the situation well on Sky: “I think part of his behavior in the second half was disgraceful.” As Fernandes fell back and down clutching his face after Ibrahima Konate hit him in the chest, Neville remarked, “That’s embarrassing of Fernandes.”

Neville is often at his brightest and most insightful when United have fallen below the standards he has set himself. Neville was born groaning, but he was an honest competitor. His outrage at the underperformance of United and Fernandes in particular is genuine.

Some of the allegations leveled against Fernandes, like claiming he asked to be deposed, appear unlikely and unfounded. Or unproven: Fernandes touched the assistant referee instead of pushing him, the official had initiated the contact and Fernandes just tried to get past. It was barely Paolo Di Canio on Paul Alcock in 1998.

What particularly irked fans was his failure at leadership and lack of defiance when Liverpool, old foes, rampaged. The way to respond to adversity, especially as a captain, is to encourage and lead by example to teammates, run harder, hold your ground against the opposition and selflessly backtrack.

Fernandes’ failure in dealing with Liverpool substitute Stefan Bajcetic was particularly bad. An older player was trained by a teenager. Bajcetic played with Fernandes on the right flank, spinning away from him and then stopping when Fernandes made a half-hearted challenge and the youngster just accelerated down the line. Fernandes didn’t follow, just stood there waving his hands. What message did that send to his teammates? just give up Fernandes needs to read his tweets. “Never give up,” he crooned after United came from a deficit against West Ham United in the FA Cup last week.

“When the team looks lost and they’re being beaten up by your biggest rival, you expect the captain to at least play for some pride,” confides a die-hard home-away fan to Fernandes. “Unfortunately that didn’t happen and he folded. We don’t want anyone who gives up, stops running and acts like a stubborn school kid on the playground when things aren’t going the way we want them to.”

Added to this is the debate over whether Fernandes fits Erik ten Hag’s style. He doesn’t always show the necessary tactical and emotional discipline. Fernandes also prefers to play killer, occasionally risky passes in a counterattack than contribute to longer plays in a possession-focused format. Christian Eriksen fits the manager’s approach better.

Fernandes has to be given some sympathy given his position rotation by Ten Hag. In the past two weeks he has played on the right and left wing, in the hole. He’s best as No. 10 but Ten Hag wants to throw in Wout Weghorst. Fernandes could be forgiven for some frustration. Weghorst is a smaller player, albeit a more appealing role model.

The United fan, angered by Fernandes’ behaviour, had a final word on his No8: ‘I hope he will reflect on that performance and learn from it. He could possibly make a good captain.”

And that’s an important point. With club captain Harry Maguire seemingly headed for the exit and Marcus Rashford focused on maturing into a world-class striker, Ten Hag has few options. Casemiro or Lisandro Martinez? Declan Rice? Fernandes represents the club well when asked to speak on various subjects, particularly after the game, although viewers inevitably contrast his intelligent, well-rounded comments with the earlier pantomime act. Fernandes just needs to let the maturity of his words shape his emotional response in games.

But the game needs to be honest, acknowledging that Fernandes is hardly the sole master of dark arts and cunning. Most teams in the modern era have one player dedicated to milking: Jack Grealish at Manchester City; Wilfried Zaha at Crystal Palace, albeit younger; and Anthony Gordon at Everton, while Bukayo Saka has cleaned up his act after making a name for himself with officials after falls against Sheffield United and Southampton.

Most teams have a player who likes to waste time – see Nick Pope at Newcastle United or his team-mate Jamaal Lascelles, who also likes to step in as a substitute when the ball goes wide – and those who follow a bit, like Richarlison of Tottenham Hotspur and Cristian Romero.

Virgil van Dijk is not slow to lecture assistants and Sunday’s official suffered a short barracks in the first half. Wasting time disrupting the flow is not new. When Kenny Dalglish was Liverpool manager, when he got into the dugout at Anfield he threw the ball back and it was a throw-in for the visitors so far back that it hit the curb on the front of the pitch and bounced back. waste a few seconds.

Waste of time can be addressed with stricter officials, as they were at the World Cup where ten minutes or more of added time was not uncommon. It remains to be seen whether the broadcasters will be so enthusiastic. Such is the mounting frustration over faking injuries, whether it’s cautioning an opponent or wasting time, that the Americans have acted and events across the pond need to be watched.

Never looking for ways to improve the game, MLS has experimented with the off-field treatment rule in its developing leagues. “If a player is suspected of being injured and remains down for more than 15 seconds, a medical team will come onto the field to assess the player and provide off-field assistance,” the private briefing note said MLS. “Once the player has left the field, he will be treated by the medical staff and will not have to stay on the field for three minutes. There are certain exceptions to the three-minute requirement, including possible head injuries, heart problems, or other serious medical events.”

Before this is tried out in bigger leagues or anywhere near Ifab’s domain, the apparent concern over subjectivity needs to be discussed. Does the referee know if a player is faking an injury or not? It’s tough.

This MLS document concludes, “The new rule will also increase effective playing time by reducing the likelihood of players embellishing injuries and the style of play that causes delays in games.” No player wants to risk three minutes long if he’s not hurt, so surely they’d be up within 15 seconds. MLS is still collecting data on this but first impressions are that players are getting up quicker.

Until a law is introduced to counter the simulation, or the players are shamed for fair play or understand they are role models, it would be great if the referees would temporarily ignore the player who is frantically standing next to the fourth official or assistant and come back would like. If they’re wasting the game’s time, let’s waste theirs. But the game needs to remember that Fernandes isn’t the only villain.

-The times

Originally released as Manchester United, it is starting to tire of the impact Bruno Fernandes has had on his teammates

https://www.codesports.com.au/football/english-premier-league/manchester-united-is-growing-weary-of-bruno-fernandes-effect-on-his-teammates/news-story/5d222c50191c44d28522ab693909793d?nk=7e5b95d5670088b8ff2aea6203a4799b-1678149018 EPL: Manchester United are getting tired of Bruno Fernandes

Ryan Sederquist

InternetCloning is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – admin@internetcloning.com. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Related Articles

Back to top button