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Bruno Fernandes tells Manchester United: improve or I’m off

Bruno Fernandes will lead Manchester United out at Wembley in tomorrow's FA Cup final against Manchester City

Bruno Fernandes

Manchester United captain Bruno Fernandes insists he is happy at Old Trafford but wants his ‘expectations to fit with the expectations of the club’.

The United midfielder is under contract until 2026 but has been linked with a move away in the summer after another disappointing Premier League campaign which ended in an eighth-placed finish.

Erik ten Hag’s men can still get into Europe by winning tomorrow’s FA Cup final against Manchester City but Fernandes hinted that may not be enough to keep him at the club.

In a long, first-person piece on The Players’ Tribune, the Portugal international said: “After this difficult season, it is my responsibility to give more. It starts with me. And it starts tomorrow. We have to give everything in this last match against City, and we have to move forward.

“I love to step out at Old Trafford more than anything in the world. I don’t want to leave. This has always been my ultimate dream.

“I just want my expectations to fit with the expectations of the club. If you go talk to any fan, they will tell you the same thing. We want to compete for the league. We want to be playing Champions League football. 

“We want to be in cup finals. That is the standard. That is what I want. That is what you all deserve.

“I just want to keep fighting. I want to be here. My family wants to be here.”

United have shown flashes of promise this season, but Fernandes says the overall mood at Old Trafford is one of “frustration”.

Fernandes added: “Isn’t that what we all feel? That’s really the only word for this season, I think. If you ask me, or if you ask any United fan, it would be the same.

“There were so many moments when we won a massive game, and it felt like OK, now we are going to build from this … and it just never happened. It never fully clicked for us. We were not consistent enough, and we have to be better. For each other, for the club, for our fans.

“Our traveling support has been amazing. You all saw it at Selhurst Park, when we lost 4–0, and our fans were still standing and singing the entire match. I was out with an injury, and I had to sit and watch at home, which just drives me crazy. (Apologies to my wife and children.) 

“I could hear the fans singing, and it just made me wish that I could have been there on the pitch to stand in front of them and applaud them back. For all the s*** we have been through, with injuries and setbacks, our fans have never stopped giving everything.”

United are massive underdogs to beat Pep Guardiola’s men and deny them back-to-back domestic doubles with Fernandes issuing a rallying call for the fans to get behind them at Wembley.

He said: “So, to my kids, and to the rest of the United fans across the world, I just want to say: I know it has not been easy. I know it has not been to our standard.

“But we’re on our way to Wembley.

“Get behind us one more time.”

Picture of Jon Fisher

Jon Fisher

Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.