Home » Bruno Fernandes’ Manchester United struggles blamed on Cristiano Ronaldo

Bruno Fernandes’ Manchester United struggles blamed on Cristiano Ronaldo

by Scott Eckersley
Bruno Fernandes, Cristiano Ronaldo

Manchester United talisman Bruno Fernandes appears to have been straining, unsuccessfully, to find peak form over the last few games.

In fact, Fernandes has notched just two Premier League goals since scoring a memorable hat-trick against Leeds in the first match of the season.

This uncharacteristic run of just two goal involvements in his last eight league games certainly suggests he’s struggling to perform anywhere near his magical best.

As reported by The Sun, former Chelsea star Eidur Gudjohnsen has claimed that Fernandes’ difficulties could be at least partly blamed on the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo.

“It’s as if Fernandes was always looking for Cristiano Ronaldo,” Gudjohnsen said. “Nine out of ten times, he tries to find Ronaldo and if this doesn’t work, he gets impatient and begins to try very difficult things.

“Bearing in mind the way he began at United, we want to see much more of him.”

The Icelander’s thoughts seem to chime with a feeling among observers that the Portuguese ace has been attempting too many ambitious passes too often. Everything he does feels a little forced.

Adding his voice to this wave of Bruno-scepticism comes former Arsenal midfielder and perennial Sky Sports waffler Paul Merson, who claims that confidence is the root of the United man’s problems.

Merson believes that, “When you lose confidence it doesn’t matter who you are – we all lose confidence – it’s a different game. He’s not touching the ball in the game now, he’s not touching it 60, 70 or 80 times.

“Everything went through Fernandes, everything. It’s not that case now, everyone’s looking for Ronaldo now. This needs to change.”

And, while Merson might have an often uneasy relationship with logic, he might have stumbled onto something approaching a sensible take here.

This is the first time since his arrival in England that United’s midfield magician has consistently struggled to affect games. He’s always been a risk-taker but those risks just aren’t coming off at the moment.

There’s a hint, maybe, of a player trying too hard to play his way into form. Maybe he just needs to relax, stop looking to force the issue and go back to basics.

Against Norwich especially, Fernandes seemed to prioritise the ambitious pass – often into Ronaldo – when a simpler option might’ve been more sensible.

It’s great when it comes off – and it often does with Fernandes – but can be infuriatingly costly when the wastefulness starts to rack up.

Still, as the old saying goes, form is temporary. And only a fool would bet against brilliant Bruno quickly rediscovering the incredible effectiveness that has made him a firm Old Trafford favourite.

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