Manchester United star Bruno Fernandes will become “the biggest enemy” of any friend he has when they line-up against one another.
Fernandes joined United from Sporting CP in January in a deal worth up to £67.6million (€80m) and played a role in seven goals (three scored, four assisted) in nine appearances before the season was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Portugal international was named the Premier League Player of the Month for February, with manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer saying he had brought an “X-factor” to the club.
Fernandes’ strong mentality has been highlighted publicly by Solskjaer and team-mates including captain Harry Maguire and Scott McTominay.
Asked for the word that best describes him as a player, Fernandes told United’s official website: “Warrior – because for me every game is a battle. You need to go out to the game and just understand you need to beat your opponent.
2015 – Bruno Fernandes is the first @ManUtd player to win the Premier League Player of the Month award in their debut month in the competition since Anthony Martial in September 2015. Yes. pic.twitter.com/pfO14QhawD
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) March 16, 2020
“You play with all of the respect, because you need to have respect for your opponent, but you need to beat them. If you don’t beat them, they will beat you.
“It doesn’t matter who is on the other team. If it is a friend, because I have friends playing in the Premier League, I don’t care. At that moment I will be the biggest enemy they can have.”
Fernandes made his United debut just two days after signing a five-and-a-half-year contract at Old Trafford, playing the full 90 minutes in a goalless draw with Wolves, and he was touched by the welcome he received from the supporters.
He added: “It is difficult to say just one thing that is inspiring about Manchester United.
“Going out at Old Trafford, everybody knows about the stadium and the atmosphere. But when you have the kit of Manchester United, all red, with your black shorts, and you feel the atmosphere of the stadium, and you feel everything, you feel the support of your fans, it is something special.
“For me, for example, when I came from Sporting, I arrived and I was in Manchester for two days. I played against Wolves and they already had a song for me.
“I had just arrived and the fans already gave me the support I need to be confident and be at home. I think this is the most important thing, that atmosphere and love you feel from your supporters.”