Bruno: I came to Manchester as fast as I could!
New signing Bruno Fernandes is not just a brilliant footballer, but a brilliant talker. Earlier this week, he spoke with MUTV's Mark Sullivan to answer a raft of fan questions. Here's part one – it's a great read!
Hello and welcome to our Portuguese magnifico, Bruno Fernandes! Bruno, how are you coping, being isolated with your family in lockdown?
“I’m okay. You know, when you have your family close, it’s easier. It’s difficult with the little baby because she needs to spend the energy she has – and she has a lot of energy! But me, my wife and my child have some different ways, to do some games and spend our time together.”
It’s great that you’ve got the family there so you can spend time as a family. Do they help you keep motivated and help you stay sane?
“Yes, they help a lot because when you have someone to stay with you during the day it’s easier. If you stay alone at home it can be harder because you can’t go out, you can’t do anything. You have just to talk with the walls, nothing more and it will be difficult. I think when you have family close and you can spend time. For us, most of the time we don’t have this time to be at home because we are out for games and everything. It’s difficult staying at home all the time because it’s not normal but you need to enjoy this time because you don’t know for how much time we will stay at home like this so you need to enjoy these moments. I hope soon we go back to the normal life and start playing games.”
One thing we notice about you straightaway Bruno is your beard, the beard is growing. Diogo Dalot was answering a tweet of yours the other day saying “We’ve found the new actor of Narcos…”
“No, no, we’ve found the new Juan Sebastian Veron! But the hair, the hair needs to stay.”
So you’re not going to follow suit with Paul Pogba, Andreas Pereira and everyone shaving their heads?
“No, no. I’m crazy, but not so far!”
“I think your wife will be happy about that! Right, Bruno, we’ve got some fans’ questions for you to answer so we’ll crack on with them.”
Must-watch: Bruno answers your fan questions Video
Must-watch: Bruno answers your fan questions
Missed Bruno earlier in the week? Here's another chance to see our Portuguese magnifico answer your questions...
The first one is from Thomas Routledge here in the UK, and he asks this: how are you settling into life in Manchester, considering you can’t leave your house at the moment?
“To begin with, it was easy because the staff of Manchester United helped me a lot to find my house as soon as I can. So my family… I think… I stayed alone for just one week in Manchester. In the first month I had time to go out, to have dinner out – not a lot because we had a lot of games. But I’m fine. Also, if I need to stay at home, normally I’m a person who wants and who likes to stay at home. I don’t go out a lot to lunch or to dinner, maybe sometimes because my family needs to go out and to know better the city and everything. But normally it’s my way to stay in the life. I stay at home, I rest, I play with the baby, and I do some gym work. Obviously now it’s difficult because you can’t train. When you train, you spend a lot of energy and normally when I come home I eat and I sleep. In the afternoon, I need all the time to sleep for an hour, an hour and a half, to be fine with my body. So now I think the only thing I miss is my team-mates, the atmosphere around the stadium, the games, pressure – because I like the pressure. For me it’s difficult to not be at Old Trafford, playing games for our fans.”
The second question is from Zakiya B, also from the UK. What was your reaction when you were told that Manchester United wanted to sign you?
“I have already said this a lot of times but it was a dream come true. For me, ever since I was a kid, it was a dream playing for Manchester United. I already told everyone in the interview, Manchester United was and is one of the biggest clubs in the world. You look in the past and when I’m younger, you look at the players who play for Manchester United and you see the biggest stars in the world. You see the best players in the world. You have players from everywhere and also, we talked a lot and I told you about Cristiano. I looked at Manchester with more interest when Cristiano was here because it’s normal when you have Portuguese players in some teams, you look at them more than other teams. But at that moment, I started to look at Manchester in a different way because you see Cristiano but then you see also the team and you have Paul Scholes, you have Rooney, you have Giggs and you have Roy Keane, Cantona before. You have a lot of players… I don’t know… van Nistelrooy… I can stay here for hours saying all the names of players for Manchester United. Also Nani, who’s played with me. You have big stars playing here. [Joining] Manchester United was so easy because since I was a kid, it was a dream, so for me, doing this step, a big step to the Premier League to Manchester United was perfect.”
On to the next one from Yasoob in the UK. During this difficult period, how are you keeping with yourself, health and fitness and family at home? What are you doing to maintain your fitness?
“We had a programme from United. We try to do everything we can at home. It’s difficult but most of us have all the conditions to train. It’s not like on the training ground, with the pitch, the guys and the ball and everything. But we train once or twice a day, it depends on the day. We also have days free, or today we do less than the other days. For us, it’s really important the contact we have with all the staff and to keep going with training.”
Wayne Robertson, also from the UK, says: since signing for United, has your view of the club changed and has it surprised you if it has?
“I’m at one of the biggest clubs in the world, but you realise that when you arrive. Everything surprised me. You expect a lot when you come to a club like Manchester United, but when you arrive and you see everything you see the expectations are low. My expectations were low. Everything for you is new, is wonderful. Old Trafford, you know it’s Old Trafford, it’s one of the best stadiums in the world, with the atmosphere. Just when you put your first step in the pitch and you see the atmosphere, you start the game, you touch the ball, you score, you’re doing an assist, you listen to all the fans. That moment is different. No expectations can explain when you are on the pitch and you feel everything.”
And now you’ve got your own song as well?
“Yes. I expected this, maybe a bit faster arriving at Manchester! [laughs]”
Bruno became a big admirer of United after seeing compatriots Ronaldo and Nani wear red.
To Anusha, who says: "What thoughts went through your head when you signed the contract to play for United?"
“Not a lot of things. When you know Manchester United is a dream for you, you don’t think a lot. You just sign and go on. You are happy with your choice, because you have the opportunity to choose Manchester and also when you have the chance you need to take it with both hands. Try to go as fast as you can, just to be in Manchester the next day or the same hour, to start your dream of playing and everything.”
Brilliant stuff, onto the next one. This is all the way from the States. Daisy asks: “Which players or people have been the most helpful to you since you arrived at United?”
“Diogo, of course, was one of the most important players in this period, because he helped me a lot. So he can speak Portuguese and also talking and everything, but also because he calls me for his home to stay there, to not stay in the hotel alone, so he and his mum and his family helped me a lot, because you can stay in one home with people, with Portuguese people for me it’s easier. His mum made dinner for me. The most difficult things are easy in the beginning because Diogo and his mum helped me a lot, so I think Diogo was one of the most important players in the beginning, but all the people helped a lot. Alex from the player care, he helped me a lot with the house, with everything, with the accountant, with the bank account. I think Manchester on this was amazing, because you had all the people to help with this and just to put your head in the game, in the training and everything, but also the most part of the players helped me a lot. The Spanish guys, because the language is easy to talk, also the others, everyone asked me if I needed something, if I need this or this, small things, but everyone can help you. I think the beginning was easy because everyone wants to help me. If you talk about this every player helped me. I played my first game and I feel like I’m there from the beginning of the season, because everyone treated me like I’m one of them. I arrived two days ago, I trained one time and I go directly to the game and I feel the support of my team-mates. Like I feel the support of my team-mates at Sporting and I played for three years in Sporting, and I just arrived and I feel they have confidence in me, they pass me the ball. For me this is the most important, when I am on the pitch and they give you the ball and they know you have pressure, but they know, they have confidence in you and they give you the ball. For me this is the most important. Sometimes out of the pitch it’s normal if you talk more with one player than another one. It’s normal, because it’s your way to stay in life. Maybe I have a way to stay in life and someone have a different way. I talk with him in the same way. There’s no problems between us, but it’s normal I talk more with Diogo, because Diogo is Portuguese, the language is easier and I know Diogo from a long time, so this is a normal situation, but in the pitch is where you see if your team-mates are confident in you or not. For me, this is the most important. When you are training and when you are on the pitch, there you need to show how important your team-mate is for you. Out of the pitch, you can help also and it was really important for me, because everyone wants to help me. If I wanted shampoo, if I wanted anything, small things, for example, I arrived and I talked with a guy I know from PlayStation and I gave joysticks to Aaron Wan-Bissaka, I gave one to Diogo, also David, Fred and I talk with the other players. If someone wants one, just tell me and I can give you one, so from Manchester United, for example, David he took one for Dragon Ball Z, because he’s a fan and these are the kind of things, when you arrive, you want to have this feeling that you can trust, if you need something I will help you, if I need something I know you will help me.”
Bruno’s best bits from March Video
Bruno’s best bits from March
That goal at Everton, assists for Martial and Ighalo and more: Bruno Fernandes’s March highlights are all here…
That’s fascinating to hear, that’s absolutely superb. Margaret Bosworth from the UK asks: “What was the final thing that convinced you to say ‘yes’ to Manchester United?”
“There were a lot of final things. Like I said before, since the beginning I wanted to join Manchester United. For me, the most important was obviously the confidence of the coach. I need to know I am backed from the coach, because sometimes when you change club, not every time the coach wants you. Not like I need to come because the coach wants me to play, no, not like this, but I want to feel the confidence from the coach. You come, you are a choice for me and you come. I need you, I want you, it’s not like you come and I ask but I will play? No, this for me is not the point. For me, the point is the confidence he has in me. If he has confidence in me, then the rest is working. I need to work to conquer my place, to play, to keep going with games and games and games. For me this is the most important. So I feel the confidence from the club and I feel also the confidence from the coach, Ole, and also if maybe the choice was not from the coach, I come. I come and I will show to the coach I can play, I can be a choice for him, because sometimes you need to press yourself, to be better and give more, so maybe if I come and I am not the choice for the coach, I will know I need to give not 100 per cent, 200 per cent, because the coach needs to see, he needs to see me, he needs to understand that I need to play, I want to play more than the others. In your mind, you want to play more than the others, but the others are thinking the same way with you. I want to play more than Bruno and I will say I want to play more than you. This is the confidence we need to have to keep improving, to keep training more and the healthy battles you need in the team. You are competing with someone, this one, this one and this one. You need to give more than him and he will be thinking the same way with me and then, if you’re thinking the same way, you can be much better. Me and him. It doesn’t matter who plays, you will train better, I will train better and so the team will be better. ”
What makes Bruno so special Video
What makes Bruno so special
Watch as Bryan Robson gives an in-depth take on our Player of the Month's qualities...
Ettiene from South Africa: “Bruno, what is your secret to performing so well in games?”
“I don’t think I have a secret, but I train like my team-mates. I try do some exercise out of the pitch, in the gym, with Charlie [Owen, fitness coach] and all the staff, Ed [Leng, lead sports scientist] also. Most of the time I do with Charlie. When I arrived, he asked me what I do for prevention and everything from Sporting, he talks with the guys at Sporting and everything. So I do some things in the gym, I like to do a lot of finishing at the end of the training, do some shots, some free-kicks, some penalties, some of everything, because I think when you’re training in these kind of situations you can be better if you train every day on this, because if you shoot one ball and the ball goes good, it’s okay, but in the game sometimes you have more than one ball and to be better you need to repeat for 10, 20, 15. I don’t know, you need to repeat and repeat and repeat and repeat, because maybe 20 times you will miss the goal a lot of times, but you know which mistake you are doing, what you need to do better and I think, when you train and when you train on what you think you need to be better, it’s not like I need to be better on shooting, no, but maybe if I stop shooting or training on shots, slowly after days I will be the worst and if I’m training every day I will be better and better and better. It doesn’t matter if I’m training maybe one week complete and I score all the goals in training and maybe I’ll go on the pitch on Sunday and I don’t score. I shoot 20 times for a day, I need to shoot 40 now, 40 times a day and maybe I start with this and I go to the game and I have maybe one chance and I score and, last week, I had five chances and in those five chances I scored zero goals.”
So a lesson to the youngsters watching: keep practising. Repetition. Practice, practice, practice.
“It’s important. It doesn’t matter if you miss a lot, because when you miss you know what you missed and you need to correct that. Just keep going and improve, improve. If you want to take the crossbar every day 10 times try and try. If you don’t hit it one time, it doesn’t matter, just keep trying, keep trying. This is the most important.”