Sky Sports News have provided an update on Manchester United’s widely-publicised pursuit of Sporting CP star Bruno Fernandes.
25-year-old Fernandes has emerged as one of Portuguese football’s star performers over the last couple of seasons.
The former Udinese and Sampdoria man possesses all of the key traits of a modern attacking midfielder, combining a keen eye for goal, set-piece prowess, creative flair and a penchant for the spectacular.
Across all competitions last season, Fernandes racked up a spectacular 32 goals and 18 assists.
As a result, it subsequently came as little surprise to see a whole host of top European clubs named as keen suitors of the Sporting star last summer.
Manchester City were first rumoured to have been on the verge of clinching a deal for the midfielder, before Premier League rivals Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham were all also touted as potential destinations.
Bit of Bruno Fernandes detail. His agent, Miguel Pinho, met with #THFC y’day. Fernandes & Lo Celso Spurs’ midfield targets. #MUFC, who met Pinho 2 months ago, asked him in past fortnight for some more time as they focus first on signing a RB (Wan-Bissaka) https://t.co/s2XCpyzQYX
— James Ducker (@TelegraphDucker) June 20, 2019
In the end, however, a transfer failed to come to fruition for Fernandes, with the 25-year-old having subsequently gone on to pen a new deal at the José Alvalade Stadium.
Man United the front-runners
Fernandes’ blistering form, though, has continued into the new season.
To this point, the midfielder has directly contributed to 28 goals in just 25 appearances.
As such, the speculation surrounding his name has inevitably continued to mount, with one club in particular having been hotly-tipped to swoop for Fernandes this month
The outfit in question? Manchester United.
It has long been common knowledge that Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is on the lookout for attack-minded midfield reinforcements, amid Jesse Lingard’s struggles.
But, with first-choice targets James Maddison and Christian Eriksen looking unattainable, Solskjaer and co. are said to have switched their attentions back to Fernandes.
Widespread reports across the European media over the weekend suggested that the Manchester giants are pushing hard for the Portuguese’s signature, with some outlets having gone as far as to claim that a £65 million bid was imminent.
To this point, though, confirmation of such a proposal has not been forthcoming.
‘A long way apart’
And, as per the aforementioned update courtesy of Sky Sports today, United appear to be struggling to find a deal with Sporting.
It is reported that the two clubs remain ‘a long way apart’ in their respective valuations of Fernandes.
Sporting are said to be demanding around £60 million, plus the signature of out-of-favour Red Devils stopper Marcos Rojo.
However, thus far, an agreement over the terms of such a transfer have not been forthcoming, with negotiations looking set to rumble on over the coming weeks.
Are Manchester United willing to stump up the cash for Bruno Fernandes? 💰💰💰
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) January 14, 2020