Man Utd still off the pace despite 'brilliant' Fernandes, says Scholes

Paul Scholes believes Manchester United is still behind despite the addition of the "brilliant" Bruno Fernandes.

Manchester United midfielder Bruno Fernandes   -  Getty Images

Paul Scholes believes Manchester United is still behind despite the addition of the "brilliant" Bruno Fernandes.

After arriving from Sporting CP in January, Fernandes had scored twice and provided three assists in five Premier League games before the season was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A United great, Scholes said there was no doubting the Portugal international had added the quality his former club had been lacking.

"The one thing with Bruno is he doesn't look like a central midfielder to me, he's an out and out number 10," the former England international told BBC Radio 5 Live.

"He's great on the ball, always on the half turn and he's the link that United really needed.

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"They lacked that quality in midfield and since he came in he's had that. He can feed the ball in to players, he's got a great shot on him and he looks like a real leader as well. United had lacked that.

"Whether he can play in midfield in a two, that's yet to be seen. He's more like an Eric Cantona, a Teddy Sheringham – he can beat players as well. He is somebody who brings what was sadly missing at Old Trafford and he seems to have livened up everyone. The team is playing well and they look like scoring goals."

When the season was suspended, United was fifth in the table, three points behind fourth-placed Chelsea.

Scholes feels Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side is still trailing the likes of Manchester City and Liverpool, who held a 25-point lead at the top.

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"They are still behind, but they have bought a brilliant player in who seems to have knitted it all together," he said. "They did have a really good group of players but missed that one person who can make a difference – like a David Silva or Kevin De Bruyne who can glue the team together with their attacking movements.

"I still think they are a bit off the pace, they've looked good lately since Fernandes came in but Liverpool and Manchester City are streets ahead.

"There are three or four signings that can help but for the first time in a long time you feel like they could close the gap to the top."

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