Bruno Fernandes is putting pressure on Sporting Lisbon as he looks to complete a move to Manchester United this month.
The 43-year-old has been putting pressure on Sporting Lisbon to finalise his transfer deal with Manchester United
According to express.co.uk, Manchester United transfer target Bruno Fernandes has reportedly asked not to play against Benfica in Sporting Lisbon’s Primeira Liga derby this evening.
United have been in negotiations with Fernandes’ employers as they seek to secure a deal as quickly as possible, although it now appears unlikely his arrival will be secured in time for him to play against Liverpool in the Premier League on Sunday.
Sporting are keen to keep their captain in order for him to take on their rivals Benfica at the Jose Alvalade Stadium tonight (9.15pm).
Manager Silas said at a press conference on Thursday: “The only certainty I have is that Bruno Fernandes will be present against Benfica.
“We prepared the game with Bruno and he trained very well, as always.
“When we have such an athlete it is normal for a lot of teams to want him, but tomorrow he will be there unless disaster strikes.”
The 43-year-old was full of praise for the Portugal international, seemingly headed for the exit door, saying: “He is an extraordinary player, the best and most valuable in the league, as he was last season.
“I’ve heard someone say that he’s not worth the money you are talking about and it’s true, he’s worth a lot more.
“In addition to attacking better than anyone in our country, he still gives the most to defend.”
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Yet according to claims from Portuguese journalist Goncalo Lopes, the 25-year-old has now asked not to be involved against Benfica.
Lopes tweeted: “Bruno Fernandes admits not to play against Benfica. He’s pressuring Sporting to go to @ManUtd.”
That’s with Sporting and United currently haggling over a fee, with the Red Devils seeking to agree a move closer to £50m.
Sporting, however, are believed to be holding out for nearer to £65m as they seek to solve their financial problems.
Fernandes is understood to have agreed personal terms over a move to Old Trafford to become United’s first January signing.
He would be the fourth addition under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer following the summer acquisitions of Daniel James, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire.
Express Sport understands Fernandes will earn up to £150,000-a-week if he secures his move to Manchester to pen a four-and-a-half-year contract.
The Telegraph have claimed Sporting are interested in signing a United player on loan as part of the deal but have rejected goalkeeper Joel Pereira while defender Marcos Rojo is too complicated.
Andreas Pereira has been mooted as another option with the Brazilian set to be directly affected by Fernandes’ arrival, given they take up similar roles.
Meanwhile, United are set to wave goodbye to Ashley Young, who is Italy bound to join Inter Milan for around £1.3m.
The veteran, 34, will leave the club after nearly nine years and join up with ex-Chelsea boss Antonio Conte on an expected 18-month contract in Serie A.
Young follows former United team-mate Romelu Lukaku in making a permanent switch to Inter, while Alexis Sanchez is on loan with the Nerazurri from the Red Devils until the end of the season.
United are back in action when they take on rivals Liverpool in the Premier League on Sunday (4.30pm).