Man Utd: Are they over-reliant on Bruno Fernandes?
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Manchester United star Paul Pogba thinks Bruno Fernandes is good at everything. However, he has picked out one weakness in the Portugal international’s game. Both players are expected to start when the Red Devils lock horns with Burnley in their Premier League clash on Sunday.
Pogba had to wait a while to play with Fernandes at the club.
The latter signed from Sporting Lisbon in the January transfer window of 2020, at a time where his team-mate was sidelined through injury.
The coronavirus crisis saw last season put on hold for three months but, after the restart, the pair struck up a fine connection on the pitch – helping United qualify for the Champions League in the process.
That’s continued into the current season, with the duo both vital assets for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
And Pogba, speaking to club media, has now hailed Fernandes – while insisting his inability to defend is his only weakness.
“I enjoy playing with Bruno,” the 27-year-old said.
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“He’s someone who understands the game and understands the movement that can give you a beautiful pass, he can finish too.
“He’s all over the place, he can do everything really… except defending!
“But really, it’s always a joy to play him, to understand him. He understands me as well, he can take my position, I can take his position as well. I think he suits the team, he’s a very dominant influence in our team.”
Pogba insists United are a harmonious camp, saying everybody gets each other – and insisting the team are all the better for it.
“I’m just myself with the guys and if it can help them to be relaxed and be happy and have a good performance, then I will keep doing it obviously,” said the 2018 World Cup winner.
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“I think it’s important to have a group that gel well together because football is teamwork and you have to be with everyone, you have to be connected, that’s how you win.
“When you’re connected like this, it’s easier to win.”
Pogba also elaborated on his dancing, admitting he and Eric Bailly love to throw shapes.
“It depends [on the type of dance],” he said.
“Eric is the best African dancer, I’m more e-pop and American dance and stuff like this. We complete each other I will say!”
In a separate interview with Sky Sports, the United star recently opened up on Jose Mourinho.
The 58-year-old marginalised the midfielder during their time at Old Trafford together, despite initially getting on.
And Pogba took aim at Mourinho, saying he isolated players and treated them ‘like they don’t exist’ – claiming that’s in stark contrast to Solskjaer.
“What I have now with Ole is different, he wouldn’t go against the players,” he said. “He wouldn’t go against the players.
“Maybe Ole wouldn’t pick them, but it’s not like he puts them on the side like they don’t exist anymore. That’s the difference between Mourinho and Ole.
“Once I had a great relationship with Mourinho, everybody saw that, and the next day you don’t know what happened. That’s the strange thing I had with Mourinho and I cannot explain to you because even I don’t know. So, yeah.”
Pogba lauded Luke Shaw as well, saying: “Maybe [Solskjaer’s methods work] because he is a bit closer to the people.
“Every coach has their own way to coach and deal with players, and as a player you have to adapt. Sometimes it doesn’t suit you and sometimes it does.
“Ole has helped Luke a lot, it was a difficult season with Luke and Mourinho, and he has proved he has the quality he always had and the trust of the manager.”
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