After United’s 3-0 loss in the Manchester derby on Sunday, almost every member of the Red Devils team, including manager Erik ten Hag, faced criticism. But one comment in particular stood out above the rest: former United captain Roy Keane urged Ten Hag to remove Fernandes’ armband. The former midfield player said, “The first thing I’d do is change the captain,” while speaking on Sky Sports. It is not captain material, Bruno Fernandes.
The attacking midfielder was officially named club captain during the summer after Harry Maguire was stripped of the role, a decision that heavily divided pundits at the time.
Months later, that discourse is still going on, with Ferdinand disagreeing with his former teammate’s comments, arguing that there are no better candidates for the captaincy and that it could add fuel to the off-pitch issues fire at Old Trafford.
Speaking on the five podcast , the United legend said: ‘Who else is there? If there was somebody jumping off the page that you go, “Okay yeah he should actually go and get it,” I would say, “Okay you can consider that,’ but throwing out comments like that…
‘Saying that is crazy. Because one of Erik ten Hag’s biggest problems has been the amount of sagas there’s been outside of the pitch.
‘We’ve had the [Mason] Greenwood situation, you’ve had [Jadon] Sancho, you’ve had Antony, now you want to create another one by taking the captaincy? Look at how that affected the team when Maguire went out of the team and he took the armband off him.
‘These are big decisions. The armband at a football club is a massive decision that makes news for all the wrong reasons and you want to bring another saga to the table? I don’t think it’s the right call at all.
‘The lens on the club at the moment is so magnified, it’s so laser-focused on the football club for the wrong reasons. Why bring another saga to the table? I don’t think it helps the situation right now.’
Having now lost seven of their 14 games of the season, United desperately need to get things together and have the first opportunity to do so when they host Newcastle in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday night.