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Manchester United star Bruno Fernandes is reportedly being monitored by Spanish giants, Real Madrid and Barcelona, in a shock development at Old Trafford. The Portuguese has been hugely influential since his 2020 move, although the arrival of compatriot Cristiano Ronaldo is set to shake up the existing balance of power under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
At present, Fernandes’ future with the Red Devils is fairly secure given his contract runs until 2025.
However, The Sun state that he is in the midst of negotiating a new deal worth £250,000-a-week, which would put him up there with the rest of the club’s high earners.
After Ronaldo was lured to Old Trafford with the promise of almost double that amount, other members of the squad may begin to question whether they are being paid their worth.
Even if Fernandes does sign on the dotted line of such a lucrative new deal, it would still leave him behind the likes of Jadon Sancho, David De Gea, Raphael Varane and Paul Pogba.
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Bruno Fernandes was subbed off during Man Utd’s recent defeat to Young Boys (Image: GETTY)
As contract negotiations are often a tense affair which can ruin relationships between players and clubs, Real Madrid and Barcelona are supposedly keeping tabs on the situation.
In the wake of a humiliating 2021 which saw them lose Lionel Messi, Barca could enter the race for more ambitious targets next summer.
Los Blancos could join them having sold off the likes of Varane and Martin Odegaard, which could leave room for Fernandes to join alongside their prime target, Kylian Mbappe.
Much of whether Fernandes is excited by the Spanish sides’ proposition boils down to how he gels with Ronaldo.
For the Portuguese national team, Fernandes often fails to have the same impact while playing in Ronaldo’s shadow.
During Euro 2020 in which they crashed out in the round of 16, the 27-year-old was dropped in favour of the industrious Renato Sanches, while for United he has always been considered un-droppable.
Fernandes would hope to have answered many of those questions by getting himself on the scoresheet during Ronaldo’s debut against Newcastle.
However, it took a 25-yard screamer to make that happen, the kind of effort which he will not be able to produce week after week.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Bruno Fernandes celebrate taking the lead against Young Boys (Image: GETTY)
Solskjaer’s United side are in transformation, and the days since every single attack went through Fernandes shortly after his arrival are now in the past.
With Ronaldo up top, Sancho on the wing and Pogba in scintillating form, others are hungry to get on the ball and Fernandes may have to adapt his game.
If the mood turns sour due to his inability to do so, or because of unsuccessful contract talks, both Barcelona and Real Madrid could be waiting to pounce.