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Manchester United have a Bruno Fernandes problem Liverpool can exploit

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It would be reasonable to say that Manchester United have had a very patchy record in the transfer market in recent times, with many of their big money signings proving unable to settle or perform at their very best level for the club.

However, there is no question that Bruno Fernandes has been an incredibly successful acquisition since he joined the club for £47 million (plus add-ons) from Sporting Lisbon last winter.

It would be too simplistic to say ‘stop Fernandes and you stop United’ when they have so many talented players, but clearly so much of what they have done well this season has gone through him.

Across their four league games against other members of the established big six in 2020/21, Fernandes has accumulated just 0.2 expected assists (per FBRef).

Fernandes may have been fortunate to assist seven goals from chances valued at 2.5 expected assists by Statsbomb last season, but with 5.9 xA in 2020/21 he is second only to Jack Grealish in the top flight of English football (per FBRef).

Fernandes also has 19 Premier League goals to his name, though as nine of them have come from the penalty spot, his record there isn’t as impressive as it initially seems.

Nonetheless, United’s number 18 will clearly be the man Liverpool will need to pay most attention to when their fierce rivals visit Anfield on Sunday.
For more news relating to Manchester United, visit our sister site MUFC Live.
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