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'Fernandes has a brain quicker than others' - Solskjaer talks up talents of 'brilliant' Man Utd midfielder

4:06 AM EST 2/11/20
Bruno Fernandes Man Utd
The Red Devils boss is delighted to see the Portuguese enjoying himself in training while working hard on several aspects of his game

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has described Manchester United new boy Bruno Fernandes as a "very, very good footballer" with "loads of attributes", while praising the playmaker for his "enthusiasm" in training.

Fernandes completed a €55 million (£47m/$60m) switch to United from Sporting CP in January, bringing to an end a long-running transfer saga which stretched back over a year.

The Portugal international was thrown straight into the deep end upon his arrival in Manchester, playing the full 90 minutes of a home fixture against Wolves just before the winter break.

Wolves earned a deserved 0-0 draw which put another dent in United's top-four hopes, but Fernandes impressed on his debut and showed little sign of being overawed by the occasion.

Solskjaer will hope that Fernandes can provide the creative spark his side have sorely lacked in the final third this season, with Paul Pogba still out of action as he recovers from ankle surgery.

The Norwegian head coach has been encouraged by how well the former Sporting star has settled into the squad during their warm-weather training camp in Marbella, but says it will take time for the midfielder to "get used to" his new surroundings.

“Well, overall, he is a very, very good footballer and his brain is obviously quicker than many others," Solskjaer told United's official website.

"He has got loads of attributes that we are going to get used to. We will get used to him and he will get used to us. His passing range, his deliveries, his movements, I am just pleased to see him here enjoying himself.”

“Yeah, he trains and he trains and he trains, so his fitness levels and enthusiasm is brilliant.”

Solskjaer also delivered an update on the fitness of Scott McTominay, Axel Tuanzebe and Timothy Fosu-Mensah, with all three men nearing returns to full training after injury lay-offs.

He said: “I hope that we will see some of them before the end of this week, but next week will be a big week for them as well to get them match fit, so hopefully we can get them back on the pitch with their kit on soon.”

Solskjaer added on the importance of having a full-strength squad to choose from as United fight for Champions League qualification as well as success in the FA Cup and Europa League: "It is a long season. Overall, during every season, every team has injuries and we have been hit badly this year and we have felt the lack of numbers.

"But when everyone is back, the competition for every place is big and hopefully we will have two games every week.

"We want to go through in the Europa League, we want to go through in the FA Cup and, of course, the league is important, so we need players to rotate with.”

United will be back in Premier League action on Monday, with a trip to Stamford Bridge to face fourth-placed Chelsea on the cards.