ten Hag comments on Man Utd's January transfer plans
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Manchester United legend Patrice Evra has accused Bruno Fernandes of fibbing about Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of tonight’s FA Cup showdown with Everton. The duo were team-mates at Old Trafford until recently, with Ronaldo leaving the club by mutual consent. And the Red Devils have been flying ever since, winning their last four matches since the World Cup in Qatar.
Manchester United thought Ronaldo and Fernandes would be the dream double act when they re-signed the veteran from Juventus back in 2021.
However, the duo never clicked at Old Trafford – while it’s also been a similar story for Portugal at international level.
Fernandes was previously asked by Evra about Ronaldo and insisted he didn’t have a problem playing alongside the 37-year-old, who has since joined Al-Nassr.
But Evra thinks the midfielder was fibbing, telling Betfair: “I don’t want to talk about the past, but you can see that the team and Ten Hag are happy, all the negativity around the club with the Cristiano Ronaldo case and everything else, that’s gone now.
“Suddenly, it feels as if Ten Hag is doing his work without distraction.
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“People talk a lot about how it impacts Ten Hag but I’m sure the players also feel more free and they don’t have that heavy discussion about Ronaldo surrounding them.
“I always give the example of Bruno Fernandes, the fans were criticising him saying he wasn’t performing the way he used to when he signed.
“This isn’t a negative on Ronaldo, but Bruno Fernandes can only perform when he’s the real boss.
“You can look at every game when he didn’t play with Eriksen or Ronaldo and that’s when we know it’s the real Fernandes.
“I told him face to face after a game, he told me that wasn’t the case and he can play with everyone, but I don’t think that’s true.
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“I always say, when you go to see an orchestra there’s only one conductor.”
Evra does think, however, that United need their current forwards to step up in the aftermath of Ronaldo’s departure.
Marcus Rashford has bagged 12 goals across all competitions but Anthony Martial has five, while Antony has just three.
Evra said: “I think there are many players that are taking responsibility, there are many players playing their best football too.
“It’s positive, but I want them to play like they did against Tottenham, I want them to have more killer instinct and I want more goals.
“We can’t just count on Rashford, he’s playing amazing at the moment but we can’t put too much pressure on him.
“I just want him to smile and be happy on the pitch, that’s already a step forward, he doesn’t need to score 20 or 30 goals because he’s not a natural goal scorer, he’s not a van Nistelrooy.
“So, that’s why I feel he needs to stay on the wing, he’s effective there, he’s not a number nine.”
One player Ronaldo has played alongside, for both United and Real Madrid, is Casemiro.
The Brazil international is currently the talk of Old Trafford, having flourished ever since his arrival back in the summer.
And Evra has dubbed him the Red Devils’ most-important player, saying: “Luke Shaw and Marcus Rashford have been consistent, but I can’t mention them before mentioning Casemiro.
“The most important player for Manchester United right now is Casemiro. If you took him out of those three games we’ve just won, we wouldn’t have won them.
“What he is doing is just fantastic. I remember watching him in the game against Tottenham and he came and tackled as a left back, after he gave an assist to Fred and he scored again.
“The most consistent player for United right now is Casemiro, if he gets injured United are in trouble.”
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