Bruno Fernandes cost Manchester United an up front fee of £47million when the midfielder signed from Sporting Lisbon in January. The fee could rise to £68million if Fernandes meets certain criteria.
According to the Athletic, the release of United’s financial accounts shows that if Fernandes wins the Ballon d’Or then they will have to pay Sporting Lisbon an extra £21million.
It seems unlikely that such a fee will ever have to be paid but should the 25-year-old achieve the form required to win the award then United are understood to be happy to pay the extra sum.
United chief Ed Woodward backed manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and expressed his delight at securing Fernandes in the statement that accompanied the accounts.
Woodward said: “This season is one of rebuild, with many changes to the squad.
“In terms of players who have left or gone out on loan; new players who we have brought into the club; and academy graduates that we have brought through to the first team.
“This process will continue as we implement our footballing vision under Ole and his coaching staff.
“Despite being linked in the media to 111 players in January, our acquisition of just one of them – Bruno Fernandes – is an important step in that direction, demonstrating our commitment to adding experienced, world-class recruits.”
Solskjaer was full of praise for Fernandes when he spoke to the media ahead of Thusday’s Europa League second leg against Club Brugge.
- Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer names one Bruno Fernandes quality
United take a slim advantage to Old Trafford thanks to Anthony Martial’s away goal but Solskjaer is hoping Fernandes can put the tie beyond doubt.
“We feel we’ve added some X-factor and quality with Bruno,” Solskjaer said.
“The addition of Bruno gives us that little bit of a different flavour. He’s a player who likes to play penetrative passes, forward passes.
“He likes to task risks, which a Man United player should do.
“I think his imagination, his picture, is a couple of seconds ahead of other players.
“That’s one of his strengths: knowing what he wants to do when he gets it.
“He also can change his mind in a split second. If that picture doesn’t work as he thought, he’ll change it. I think that composure has been important for us as well.”
United were boosted by the return of Scott McTominay and Mason Greenwood in Sunday’s 3-0 Premier League win against Watford at Old Trafford but remain without long term absentees Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford for the visit of Club Brugge.
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