Exclusive: Bruno has a lot of confidence in Pogba
Bruno Fernandes is relishing the prospect of playing alongside Paul Pogba in Manchester United’s midfield, when football returns.
Fernandes speaks enthusiastically about Pogba’s individual ability when answering a question from a fan in the second part of our exclusive Q&A session, which you can watch in full from 19:00 BST today.
The Portuguese also says that, although the 2019/20 campaign has been tough for Pogba, who has played only eight times due to injury, the France World Cup winner will bounce back once it is safe for the sport to resume.
When asked how excited he is to play with Paul, Bruno replies:
“A lot. A lot. I think we have a lot of good players in the midfield.
“Obviously Paul is injured from a long time [ago], and all we know is he has a lot of qualities.
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“We can say in football that people normally forget what you do good when you have a mistake. You can do good for 34 games, and one game you do bad and everyone will remember that.
“Paul is coming from a bad moment, because of the situation. When he played also, the club and the team was not good, because the expectations are high for Paul, because Paul is a top player and Manchester United pay a lot for him, and expectations are a lot for him.
“It's normal when you are in that situation you don't play like a superstar, because everyone expects from Paul like they expect from [Cristiano] Ronaldo at Juventus or [Lionel] Messi at Barcelona. Everyone expects this from Paul in Manchester, because they know he has the qualities for this. Also this is confidence in Paul. The team, we have a lot of confidence in Paul.”
Fernandes has experienced a brilliant start to life at Old Trafford, conjuring three goals and four assists in just nine appearances for the Reds.
The prospect of him and Pogba together in the same side will be one to make supporters’ mouths water, and the reason for that is obvious, says Bruno, who came up against the 27-year-old on five occasions in Serie A while at Udinese.
“I know Paul from Juve, because I played against him in Italy. And believe me, it's really hard to play against Paul,” Bruno adds.
“Because I play in midfield, I mark him. We play in the same line, so it's really difficult to play against Paul, because he has power, he has technique.
“It's difficult to find a player like Paul: big, strong and technical. It's difficult to find a player like this, and he has a lot of qualities. I hope he comes [back] soon.”
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Pogba’s return to the side was imminent prior to the suspension of football a month ago, with Fernandes noting that our record signing had resumed first-team training.
And the Portuguese expects the Frenchman to be given a warm welcome when he does make his return, for a Reds side which is now 11 unbeaten in all competitions.
“He started training with us in the week before we stopped, so I think when he comes back he will start to play, and be in the team.
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“More than expectations, I'm confident what Paul can give to us, to the team. I think he has a lot to give, he has a lot of quality, and I think with the positive energy in the club – because we won a lot of games and we are in a good moment – everyone, the supporters and everything, will be more patient with Paul maybe.
“I feel sometimes when the things go wrong, the patience is less, you know? It's normal, because the fans want to win. Football is about winning; it's not about playing.
“But the confidence now in the team is bigger. So I think Paul, when he comes back, he will feel this and will give more for the next months and the next games.”
Watch part 2 of our exclusive Q&A with Bruno Fernandes from 19:00 BST tonight (Wednesday).