If you haven’t heard the name of Bruno Fernandes, then you haven’t been paying enough attention to the transfer rumours in recent months. The Sporting CP playmaker has emerged as one of the most talented, sought-after players in Europe. And it seems it’ll only be a matter of time before he makes the jump to a top-tier team.
The 24-year-old attacking midfielder has dazzled this season for the Lisbon-based side, as he has 16 goals and 12 assists in 30 Primeira Liga appearances. He seems more than ready to play in a more competitive environment. Bruno also has international experience since he’s already represented Portugal 11 times, scoring once. But in the event of any side signing him next summer, what kind of player will they be getting?
Evaluating Bruno Fernandes as a complete player
First of all, we must sort out where he finds himself at his best on the pitch. Fernandes can operate as a central midfielder or in a more advanced role, giving him versatility to fit into any tactical scheme. But his natural role is the one of an attacking midfielder. Even though fewer and fewer teams play with a true n.° 10 in the top leagues, Fernandes is at his best when he plays behind the striker. He’s also comfortable becoming the side’s primary source of creativity.
If we had to compare him with someone, he has a few things of Mesut Özil in him. But his scoring ability is more like the one of Kevin De Bruyne or Christian Eriksen. His ceiling could be the one of the Dane, although Fernandes is already 24 years old. He’s not old by any means, but he’s not a prospect who’s going to rise and come out of nowhere. But he’s still a few years away from his prime yet.
A midfielder that can also be a scoring threat
Bruno Fernandes has been so influential for Sporting, that he’s gotten directly involved in 45% of his side’s goals during the current league campaign. Furthermore, he’s had double-digit goals and assists in his two seasons with Sporting Lisbon. He’s not going to remain with the Portuguese side for much longer.
With 27 goals and 22 assists in 63 appearances in two years for Sporting, he’s more than ready to make the jump to a bigger side. For what is worth, Manchester United have been heavily linked with a move for him. But other sides are expected to join the race to acquire him as well.
By all accounts, it seems a matter of WHEN Sporting will part ways him. Not IF.
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