Fernandes reacts to ‘funny’ Man Utd captaincy call as he takes armband from Maguire

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Bruno Fernandes Manchester United 2020-21Getty Images

Bruno Fernandes admits to finding it “funny” that he has been selected to captain Manchester United in the absence of Harry Maguire.

The Portuguese midfielder will lead the Red Devils into Champions League battle against Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday.

Maguire would usually take on that responsibility, but the England international centre-half has been taken out of the firing line after enduring a tough few weeks with club and country.

Fernandes will be stepping in, with the 26-year-old as surprised as anyone to get the nod from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

He told United’s official website: “My reaction was funny because I wasn’t expecting to be the captain of course. I found out in the press conference and it was funny because I wasn’t expecting that but I’m really happy.

“It’s an honour for me to be captain of such a big club and to be captain of the team. You will have the armband but you need to be just the same and the leadership needs to be the same as before.

“I think everyone has his own way to be a leader and this [game] will be the same for me and the others. It will just be that I will have the armband on my arm.”

Fernandes has taken on captaincy duties before during his time at Sporting and is confident that he can lead by example.

Pressed on what kind of skipper he will be, the talented playmaker said: “I’m a loud player so it’s not like I will just be a loud captain!

“I’m always talking with my team-mates, trying to help them and, as I said before, it will not be different than the other games so I need to be completely the same Bruno, but knowing that I maybe have more responsibility than before.”

Fernandes has only been at Old Trafford since January, taking in just 27 appearances for United, but is proud to have already risen high enough in the pecking order that he is considered worthy of the armband.

He said: “As I said before, for me it was a surprise because it’s not so long that I’ve been at the club but I think it’s important for me, being the captain, and it shows the coach likes me and wants me to be here and that he believes in my leadership.”

Fernandes scored and suffered a rare penalty miss on his last outing for United, in a 4-1 Premier League win over Newcastle, and will be determined to help the Red Devils burst out of the blocks in what promises to be a testing continental campaign for Solskjaer’s side in the ‘Group of Death’.