United Briefing: Bruno's view on Premier League's best
Around this time of year, the Player of the Season awards are being dished out and Bruno Fernandes was asked during a recent fans' Q&A session for his view on the best non-Manchester United man in the Premier League.
The Portugal international, clearly a strong contender for individual prizes himself, produced an extremely considered response to the question from Blaise in Nigeria, which forms part of the second part of our big interview, covered in full exclusively in the new edition of Inside United.
The official club magazine is released today [Tuesday] and provides more amazing insight from our leading scorer, who was certainly able to convey his opinions on the star performers in the division during our chat a couple of weeks ago, going on to list 10 players who have impressed him this term.
Fernandes, who watches a lot of football, feels these players are worthy of consideration as we await the shortlists for the PFA Player of the Year and Football Writers' Player of the Year trophies.
Manchester City trio Kevin De Bruyne, Ruben Dias and Ilkay Gundogan, Liverpool's Mohamed Salah, Tottenham striker Harry Kane, Leeds United pair Raphinha and Patrick Bamford, Chelsea youngster Mason Mount and Aston Villa star Jack Grealish all get a mention.
And Bruno has also been blown away by team-mate Jesse Lingard's form on loan at West Ham United, suggesting the England international has
“got his swag back” and was the best player in the division during his recent hot streak.
“Honestly, Blaise, in the Premier League, you have a lot of good players,”Bruno revealed, before giving an in-depth answer.
“I think it’s difficult to choose one. For me, being the best player in the Premier League, you have to be the best from since we started to the end, and not coming and start playing in December or January and start doing well in that moment.
“The ones who were doing well before everyone forgets because those are doing better at this moment. I think to be the best player, you have to be consistent, try to be the best that you can for the longest time you can. Honestly, it’s difficult to choose one player to be the best.
“Of course, we all know the qualities that our rivals have. I think we can say this season, for me, as everyone knows Kevin De Bruyne is one of the best for me. If we go to the Liverpool squad, for example, I think Salah, if you say he’s playing well or not, he’s still scoring goals. Harry Kane is still doing really well in the Tottenham team, for example. I think Raphinha of Leeds is doing very well. It’s difficult to choose one. Gundogan, from the half of the season from December, started doing really well.
“If you see Jesse, I think Jesse, at the moment, if you watch the last 10 games, has been top, top, top level,”added Bruno.
“For me, if you watch the last 10 games, he’s been the best player in the Premier League, scoring and assists in every game. Everyone here is really, really happy for him. He has confidence back, he has his swag back, because he is feeling confident. We are really, really happy for what he’s doing.
“As I’ve said, we have many players I can say now and it’s difficult to choose just one. For example, Ruben Dias has come from Benfica and been consistent since he arrived [at Manchester City]. In our team, we also have players who have been consistent for all the season and I can’t remember more players at the moment.
“For example, I really like Mason Mount – he’s been consistent from the beginning of the season but, if people will watch numbers he’s not had so many goals as other players or assists as other players but, for me, as a performance he’s been really, really top. [Jack] Grealish, before his injuries, was being really, really good. I think Bamford from Leeds is also scoring a lot of goals, 14 I think this season already [now 15 in the Premier League], which is really good.
“I think it’s difficult to choose one. I will be here for a lot of time doing names, names, names. It’s better I stop or I will forget players and I don’t want to do that.”
WHAT'S HAPPENING TODAY?
As suggested earlier, the new edition of Inside United is released, featuring the exclusive interview with Bruno and much, much more excellent content, including interviews with young loanees Ethan Laird and James Garner.
We'll continue the build-up to tonight's game against Leicester City, which kicks off at 18:00 BST at Old Trafford. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side is likely to feature a number of changes due to the fixture congestion but the game is a key one for both sides.
Watch Ole’s pre-Leicester press conferenceVideo
WHAT HAPPENED YESTERDAY?
We covered Ole's press conference on Leicester's visit as he provided some team news, even if he has not yet been unable to formulate his plans. Harry Maguire's injury continues to cause some concern as we await a full update on the skipper's scans.
Edinson Cavani gave us the news we were all hoping for when he agreed to extend his contract for another year.
The Under-23s finished the Premier League 2 season against Derby County at Leigh Sports Village. Despite a brilliant strike by Hannibal, the young Reds fell to a 3-1 defeat.