Paul Scholes has lambasted Bruno Fernandes for the Manchester United captain’s post-match interview.
The former United midfielder criticised the current one for not taking responsibility for his role in the 3-3 draw with Galatasaray last night.
The result leaves United’s hopes of progressing to the knock-out stages of the Champions League dangling by a thread, with Erik ten Hag’s side needing both a victory over Bayern Munich in the final fixture, as well as Galatasaray and FC Copenhagen to draw.
It feels unlikely even to the most optimistic of fans.
In the aftermath of last night’s game which appeared, at times, to resemble two amateur boxers swinging wildly with no care for technique in the twelfth round, Fernandes admitted United have fallen foul of the same mistakes they had in previous Champions League matches.
Speaking to TNT Sports, the captain revealed: “It was another game where we could have closed the game. We had too many chances, as I’ve said, and mistakes by ourselves. It’s too bad, to be honest.”
“I don’t want to be too negative, but what we’ve been doing in the Champions League is not enough. We have to control our games every time, it’s not the first game we’ve had like this,” Fernandes rued.
While any objective analyst may look at those comments and think they are a fair assessment of yesterday’s match, Scholes took a different approach in the TNT Studio.
The former midfield maestro turned average pundit asserted: “I know in his interview he is talking about mistakes, but he made two big mistakes tonight by giving two stupid fouls away that lead to two goals.”
Fernandes conceded both free-kicks which ultimately led to Galatasaray scoring twice to claw their way back into a game United had appeared in firm control of. This, of course, ignores the absolutely calamitous errors by Andre Onana for both of these free-kicks; efforts which have no business every becoming goals at Sunday League level, let alone the most illustrious competition in club football.
Scholes went on to contend that the “full team, including himself as the captain, have to take responsibility – it’s a game they should win.” Fernandes’ constant use of the subject pronoun ‘we” in his post-match interview would normally indicate a person accepting his role within a wider group but maybe Scholes knows something different.
The fact United’s performance had looked so promising prior to Onana’s mistakes was also, in large part, because of Fernandes’ brilliance going forward. A superb one-two with Rasmus Hojlund allowed the Portuguese midfielder to assist Alejandro Garnacho’s opener, before his own emphatic rocket from thirty yards into the top corner put United two-nil up.
Scholes did not seem keen to acknowledge either of these contributions, nor lay the responsibility for either of Galatasaray’s free-kicks solely at the feet (or lack of hands) of Onana.