Paul Scholes has taken aim at Bruno Fernandes and feels the forward was not strong enough as Manchester United beat Leeds on Sunday.
Fernandes, 27, scored one goal and assisted another as the Red Devils took care of the Whites 4-2 at Elland Road. The result means Ralf Rangnick’s side are in the mix for a Champions League berth. They sit fourth but clubs below them do have significant games in hand.
It has been an up-and-down campaign for United in 2021-2022. The euphoria of signing Cristiano Ronaldo was soon replaced by frustration after a series of underwhelming displays.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was shown the door, with Rangnick at the helm until the summer. Fernandes has failed to hit the heights of previous seasons.
The Portugal international bagged 28 goals in all competitions last term.
But he has only nine to his name this time around, with suggestions Ronaldo’s presence has stifled his attacking prowess. However, it was another aspect of his display against Marcelo Bielsa’s side that drew the ire of Scholes.
The former Sporting ace was dispossessed in the lead-up to Raphinha’s equaliser. Fernandes felt he had been fouled but the referee was having none of it.
And the United legend believes the man with 40 Portugal caps needs to take a look at himself after the incident.
“I think Fernandes has to be stronger,” Scholes told Premier League Productions, per MEN. “He’s almost looking for a foul before anything happens and I don’t think it is a foul.
“Fernandes has got to be stronger there, that’s a little bit too soft. His head is up in the air looking for a foul before he comes in.”
Fernandes needs a word in his ear
Like Scholes, Rio Ferdinand has been a keen observer of United’s stuttering season. However, there is still much to play for at the Theatre of Dreams.
While a title challenge ended some time ago, the north-west giants are still in the Champions League. They face Atletico Madrid in the first leg of the last-16 tie on Wednesday.
But Ferdinand feels they are missing a type of player to get the best out of their attacking stars.
“What I think (Paul) Pogba needs and Bruno Fernandes needs – they need a Sergeant Major in…