Former Manchester United striker Robin van Persie has paid tribute to Bruno Fernandes’ self-sacrifice on the wing in recent weeks.
Erik ten Hag has increasingly used Fernandes on the wing, with Wott Wieghorst signing in January as number 10 for recent matches.
However, that system almost backfired in the second leg of the Europa League second leg against Barcelona on Thursday, as the Spaniards came out on top and Wighorst was sacked at the end of the first half.
The Portuguese midfielder was restored to his normal midfield position after half-time, and quickly set up United’s first goal for Fred.
The Red Devils scored their second through Anthony’s boot to secure a 2-1 (4-3 aggregate) victory over the La Liga giants.
Van Persie, who has played for Arsenal and Manchester United, praised the Portugal international for his perseverance in this dedicated role despite everything.
“It also shows that Fernandes plays on the wing and that the big players do it for the team,” Van Persie told BT Sport after the match.
“It’s like you’re a great player, you’re a team player. When the team needs you on the wing, they do.”