Manchester United legend Roy Keane has suggested that manager Erik ten Hag should consider removing Bruno Fernandes from the captaincy role in the aftermath of the Red Devils’ 3-0 Premier League derby loss to Manchester City.
In the challenging encounter against their arch-rivals at Old Trafford, Manchester United faced a tough test. While Scott McTominay and Marcus Rashford came close to finding the net, Pep Guardiola’s team largely outperformed the Red Devils.
Following the game, Keane expressed his dissatisfaction with Bruno Fernandes’ reactions on the field. Keane, at 52 years old, acknowledged Fernandes as a “brilliant” footballer but criticized his behavior, including constant complaining and arm-waving when things don’t go in Manchester United’s favor.
Keane shared his thoughts on Sky Sports: “After watching him today, I would certainly take the captaincy off him 100 percent. It’s a significant decision. They changed the captaincy with Maguire, but Fernandes is not captain material.”
While acknowledging Fernandes’ talent, Keane continued: “What we witnessed today, as we’ve discussed many times before, last season at Liverpool, his constant whining, moaning, and arm-waving—it’s really not acceptable. From what we saw today, I think I would remove the captaincy from him. You have to start somewhere. We were discussing where to start in terms of fixing the problems—the manager, the board level.”
Keane went on to say that he would begin by removing Fernandes from the captaincy, stating that as a brilliant footballer, Fernandes is the opposite of what he would want in a captain.
It is worth noting that Keane’s opinion appears to be influenced by the outcome of the derby match. Fernandes has been a key creative force for Manchester United since joining the club from Sporting in 2020. He has contributed significantly, registering 66 goals and 57 assists in 198 appearances, which is an impressive record. As a result of his on-field performances, Fernandes was entrusted with the captain’s armband.
Despite having an off day in the attacking third, Fernandes exhibited a strong work ethic for the team during the match. He won several duels and tackles, putting in a determined effort to help Manchester United recover.
It’s worth noting that Keane’s frustration, stemming from the derby loss, appears to be a factor in his perspective on Fernandes. While Fernandes is known for expressing his opinions to referees, which is generally regarded as a positive trait, his behavior has led to Keane’s suggestion that he might not be the ideal captain for the team.