Manchester United chiefs will be “kicking themselves” that they didn’t sign Bruno Fernandes earlier, claims Rio Ferdinand. United bought Fernandes from Sporting Lisbon in January for an initial £46.6million. The Portugal international has had a superb start to hsi time at Old Trafford, having scored 21 goals in 35 appearances.
Fernandes was linked with a move to United in the summer of 2019 but a deal failed to materialise.
The attacking midfielder helped the Red Devils finish last season on fire following his arrival, playing a big part in helping the club qualify for the Champions League.
But Ferdinand says it could have been even better if United had signed him earlier.
Ferdinand said on BT Sport: “Yep, really good [signing]. I think that’s what you want in your team.
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“They could have got him maybe earlier, they’re probably kicking themselves that they didn’t.
“But he’s here now and you just have to sometimes sit back and enjoy what he’s producing.”
Other than the arrival of Fernandes, Ferdinand in general has not been impressed by United’s recruitment in recent seasons.
And the former England captain believes appointing a director of football is the way forward for the Old Trafford club.
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“I think that’s the way the game has gone and I think these are the guys that make all the big decisions at the clubs,” Ferdinand added.
“It’s something Ed Woodward has mooted as been speaking about and it’s never really materialised for whatever reason.
“I think recruitment has probably been an issue at the club for a number of years now. Bringing in the right players, the right profile that fit the club going forward.
“And if a manager goes, the person in that position normally is the person that makes sure things don’t change dramatically when a manager goes out the door.
“There’s an ethos, a philosophy behind the scenes so a manager can seamlessly come in and that’s not been the case.”
Fernandes scored twice for United in their 4-1 Champions League win over Istanbul Basaksehir on Tuesday.
And he explained why he passed up the opportunity for a hat-trick by allowing Marcus Rashford to take a penalty.
“Of course every player wants to do a hat-trick you know but after the game in the Premier League I told Rashy the next one he will take,” Fernandes said.
“So I remembered that and also because Rashy is one of the top scorers in the Champions League and I thought it would be important for him to keep going there and taking that confidence.
“But as I said, it doesn’t matter who takes the penalties, the most important is scoring and the team scores.
“So when the team scores, I score too.”
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