Solskjaer has 'no news' on Man Utd's Bruno Fernandes pursuit

By Sports Desk January 14, 2020

Manchester United are said to be closing in on the signing of Sporting CP's Bruno Fernandes, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer claimed there was no news to relay on Tuesday.

Sporting captain Fernandes was said to be a United target in pre-season, but no move materialised and he ended up signing a new contract in November.

But that new deal has not stopped fresh speculation this month, United reported to be the frontrunners in the race for Fernandes, a Portugal international.

Sporting's demands differ between the various media reports, however they claim United are likely to have to pay in the region of £60million (€70m) for the attacking midfielder, while some stories claim Marcos Rojo could return to Sporting as part of the deal.

But Solskjaer insisted there was nothing new to tell the gathered media during his news conference on Tuesday.

"I've got no transfer updates, so no," said Solskjaer when asked if he could provide an update on the apparent pursuit of Fernandes.

"If we get something that we can tell you about we will, but I've got no news now."

But Solskjaer reiterated that United have the capability – and he has the backing – to enter the market if they wish, as he moved to downplay the importance of Deloitte claiming the Red Devils are at risk of losing their status as the Premier League's highest revenue-generating club for the first time next year.

"For me, the most important thing is we get the results sorted, the performances on the pitch," he said.

"That's got to be my focus, but I know we've got the resources and the backing if we've got to go into the transfer market, for example. We're still up there aren't we? So, we're still in a good place."

Speculation around Ashley Young's apparent move to Inter has gone quiet in recent days, though he remains out of contention for United's FA Cup third-round replay against Wolves on Wednesday.

"He's not going to be involved," Solskjaer said of the versatile 34-year-old.

Related items

  • Lampard wants Chelsea to get deals done after FA Cup scare Lampard wants Chelsea to get deals done after FA Cup scare

    Frank Lampard said Chelsea must "get it right" in the transfer market after a narrow FA Cup win at Hull City fuelled the head coach's concerns.

    A 2-1 victory at the KCOM Stadium on Saturday carried Chelsea through to the fifth round, but they were clinging to their lead late on against the Championship side.

    With Tammy Abraham injured and fellow striker Olivier Giroud looking like leaving before the transfer window closes, it is clear where Chelsea must strengthen.

    Head coach Lampard knows where Chelsea are lacking, despite expressing enthusiasm for goalscorer Michy Batshuayi's performance against Hull.

    Chelsea's transfer ban prevented Lampard making signings when he came into the club in the last close season, but they are free to bring in players now, and the countdown to the window closing at the end of January is on.

    "My job, I suppose, is to work every day on the training ground," Lampard said on BT Sport. "The other part for the club is how do we move forward by bringing in players, and we lost ground last summer.

    "We're trying to now, we need to now for the short term to push for this top four [in the Premier League]. I have a strong feeling about where we can improve personnel-wise to take us forward."

    Lampard said he believed money from the sale of Eden Hazard to Real Madrid was still available, but stressed that aspect of transfers was not his focus.

    "Recruitment when you've missed a [transfer] window is of course important and in the short term now it feels very important," Lampard said.

    "That's something we're working on and we have to get it right."

    Fikayo Tomori headed Chelsea's second goal just after the hour mark, but a deflected free-kick gave Hull a late lifeline, which they almost grabbed.

    Speaking in his post-match news conference, Lampard admitted Chelsea's failure to build on their first-half dominance was disappointing.

    "You don't expect it to be easy coming here, but we probably made it harder on ourselves by not capitalising," Lampard said.

    "Hull probably weren't at it in the first half, I think we had chances to score. Then with passages we got slightly sloppy. At half-time I wasn't delighted and then in the second half Hull gave us a real game of it.

    "If you don't take those chances when you can then teams stay in it for 90 minutes, like they did.

    "I don't know how many shots we had. Recently we have been having a lot of good chances and not taking them."

    Chelsea would love to have a driving force in the Lampard mould, given he became the club's record scorer in his playing days.

    The loss of Abraham to an ankle problem has left the team short of their most clinical finisher, and Lampard said he was still unsure of the exact nature of the injury sustained by the striker in the midweek draw with Arsenal.

    "He has been getting lightly into the water and all these things, but I said [on Friday] that there's no fracture, but other than that there is still some swelling so I don't know," Lampard said.

  • Al Shabab sign Sevilla playmaker Banega Al Shabab sign Sevilla playmaker Banega

    Ever Banega will leave Sevilla to join Al Shabab at the end of the season, the Saudi Arabian side have confirmed.

    Banega, 31, is currently in his second spell at Sevilla, who he initially joined from Valencia in 2014 before leaving for Inter in 2016.

    However, the midfielder spent just one season at San Siro before returning to the Andalusian club, where he remains a regular having started 19 LaLiga matches so far this season

    The Argentine is out of contract in June, though, and Al Shabab have now confirmed Banega has agreed to a three-year deal.

    Six-time Saudi champions Al Shabab finished fifth in the Pro League in 2018-19.

  • Chelsea captain Azpilicueta fires warning as Blues edge through FA Cup test at Hull Chelsea captain Azpilicueta fires warning as Blues edge through FA Cup test at Hull

    Cesar Azpilicueta said Chelsea lost their grip and control in the FA Cup win at Hull City, claiming players were too eager to put themselves before the team's best interests.

    The Spaniard played the full 90 minutes against the Championship side, as Chelsea battled out a 2-1 victory on their travels.

    Chelsea were dominant for the first 70 minutes and should have added to goals from Michy Batshuayi and Fikayo Tomori, but they allowed Hull too much of the ball after that point and almost paid the price.

    A fortunate reply from Kamil Grosicki, whose free-kick took a big deflection off Mateo Kovacic to wrong-foot Willy Caballero, saw the Tigers claw their way back into the match with 12 minutes remaining.

    Hull had chances to force a replay too, with Chelsea forced into some desperate and often untidy defending to remain ahead.

    "With the chances we had, we cannot concede in these kind of circumstances and we have to control better," Chelsea captain Azpilicueta said.

    "We know we have to improve our game if we want to improve as a team and go far, because tonight was a night we could have handled much better.

    "It's not the first game where we didn't manage the game well, and at the end there we were on our box suffering. Sometimes we can be punished but tonight not, but we know we have to improve."

    Speaking on BT Sport, Azpilicueta added: "For moments we stopped playing as a team and we started doing individual actions that is not our game and we got punished.

    "And if we want to play against the best teams and to fight for trophies, we have to improve."

    The absence of top scorer Tammy Abraham, who has an ankle injury, meant Chelsea were reliant on the likes of Batshuayi and Pedro – the latter could have scored at least twice but failed to convert chances.

    Goalscorer Tomori, who headed in a free-kick from Ross Barkley to put Chelsea 2-0 up after 64 minutes, said Frank Lampard's men would have been able to cruise home if they were able to finish the openings they carved out when on top.

    "In the first half we probably could have killed the game, but we didn't take our chances," Tomori said.

    "We said at half-time that because we hadn't taken our chances we had to be solid at the back, try to score another one, but we need to be more clinical.

    "I think my goal came at a good time, but it got a bit difficult towards the end when they scored the free-kick.

    "It's a one-off game and teams want to go for it. They were never going to stop and we knew that.

    "If we'd got a third goal it would have been a lot easier for us but we didn't manage to get that so we had to ride it out."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.