Manchester United closes in on Bruno Fernandes

Manchester United are closing in on a deal to sign Sporting Lisbon midfielder, Bruno Fernandes, claims leading Portuguese journalist Filipe Dias.

The 25-year-old Portugal international has been a target for United and Tottenham in the summer but eventually stayed at the Primeira Liga club, signing an improved contract in November.

However, the situation has changed since last summer. They didn't accept a deal with Tottenham for 70 million Euros but that would have been paid with 40m euros up front and then another.

Diass claims " Now Sporting will accept 70m Euros, but paid in instalments. United is a club that Bruno Fernandes really likes in England, it's a club that he really wants to play for.

"Talks have been intensified in the last couple of days, so we're kind of expecting that it might be close."

Reports in Portugal have claimed Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his assistant manager, Mike Phelan, went to watch Fernandes in action against Porto on Sunday, although the United boss refused to answer questions on the matter on Friday.

The 25-year-old claimed in August that Sporting blocked a move to Tottenham in the summer after expressing a desire to play in England, and Dias claims the decision took its toll on the player.

"When the deal with Tottenham didn't go through, it didn't affect Bruno Fernandes' game, but it did affect him mentally," Dias said.

"He is the team captain and he never stops complaining, arguing with referees all the time. You can see that he is fed up, he is a top quality player.

"Here in Portugal when you have a big player who is attracted to the market, sometimes clubs to reinforce their position negotiation-wise, they review the contract.

"They raised the salary a little bit, but what they want is to raise the release clause so they have more power when it comes to negotiation.

Sky Sports News reporter James Cooper says: "Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may not have been prepared to fully reveal his weekend location, but it appears the club could be looking at a midfielder they've been linked with before, Sporting Lisbon's Bruno Fernandes.

"United are in need of bodies in their midfield and were already actively looking at transfer options before the injuries to Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba.

"Of the current squad only Juan Mata was a January acquisition, Manchester United traditionally don't do much business or successful business in this window.

"Solskjaer does have the resources to bring in players and has said he wants his squad to emerge stronger rather than weaker from this window. He is also preparing to lose his captain, Ashley Young, so perhaps a purchase is on the cards?"

  • Source: Skyport

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