Ole Gunnar Solskjaer heaped praise on Bruno Fernandes after making such an outstanding impact during his first year at Manchester United.
Saturday marks the first anniversary of the Portuguese playmaker’s arrival at Old Trafford, where he has comfortably surpassed expectations since joining from Sporting in his homeland.
Nobody has scored more for a Premier League club than Fernandes since his debut, netting 28 goals in all competitions and providing the assist for 17 more.
The 26-year-old’s form shows few signs of abating and Solskjaer could not have asked any more from the fiercely-competitive playmaker.
“Brilliant,” the United boss said of Fernandes’ impact. “From day one he’s come in and wanted to affect the environment, the playing environment, the staff. He’s been a great addition.
“He’s such a humble human being, working hard and I think everyone has seen what he’s done on the pitch.
“Very pleased with his first year and long may it continue. The higher up in the league, the more pressure there will be on us and on him.
“Now the limelight is on him but I’m sure he’ll handle that pressure fine.
“He’s got his opinion, he’s a winner. He’s not just going to let a game pass away and talk about it after. He wants to affect it there and then.
“He’s so passionate about winning and he knows his football, he knows his stuff. He watches every single game there is on telly, especially the big games.
“And if you ask him ‘did you watch that last night?’ he’s always seen the game, so he’s going to make the most of his career, that’s for sure.”
Bruno Fernandes is our Premier League player of the 2020
Fernandes is bloody-minded in his drive for success at Old Trafford, where his transformative impact has been likened to that of Eric Cantona.
So impressive he has been that some have suggested that the team struggles when he is not firing.
“Bruno has come in and helped the team, no doubt about that,” Solskjaer said in response to such talk.
“He’s come in at a time when we needed his type of player and Bruno came into a team that makes his attributes and skills come to fruition.
“He’s come to a team that suits him and he suits the team, so that goes hand in hand.
“If the players don’t run, Bruno can’t play his passes. If Bruno doesn’t play his passes, the players can’t run.
“He’s part of a chain here and I’m sure that Bruno will say that he also appreciates his team-mates and that they help him through games.”