SPORTING CLUBE

Bruno Fernandes? "That's a question for Sporting's board" says Marcel Keizer

Bruno Fernandes was the topic of conversation following Sporting Clube de Portugal's 5-0 rout at the hands of Benfica in the Portuguese Super Cup.

Bruno Fernandes? "That's a question for Sporting's board" says Marcel Keizer
PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA AFP

Sporting Clube de Portugal head coach Marcel Keizer said Bruno Fernandes' future is a question for the club's board amid ongoing links to Manchester United.

Could this be goodbye?

Fernandes has been tipped to join United throughout the transfer window and talk of a switch to Old Trafford has gathered pace with the Premier League season on the horizon. Sunday's Portuguese Super Cup – which Sporting lost 5-0 at the hands of rivals Benfica – was widely seen as a potential Fernandes farewell before leaving Lisbon.

Portugal international Fernandes was a topic of conversation post-match and Keizer told reporters: "Bruno Fernandes is an important player. Will he stay? It's not a question for me, but for the management."

Sporting's Bruno Fernandes on the ball against Benfica

Super Cup nightmare

Fernandes scored 20 goals – 31 in all competitions – and supplied 13 assists in the Primeira Liga last season as Sporting finished third. The 24-year-old played the full 90 minutes as Sporting were humiliated by Primeira Liga champions Benfica on Sunday. Pizzi scored a brace, while Rafa Silva, Alex Grimaldo and Chiquinho were also on target against Sporting, who had Idrissa Doumbia sent off in the 89th minute.

"It's a night to forget," Keizer added. "We had a good chance to score, but we couldn't. We never gave up trying to score even after we were losing by two and three goals. Benfica also created a lot of chances and managed to score. It will be a very difficult week, but we have a match for the championship next week and we have to prepare it."

Bruno Fernandes after the match

New season starts

Keizer's Sporting open their league campaign away to Maritimo on Sunday.