How Bruno Fernandes could fit into Manchester United's midfield
SETUBAL, PORTUGAL - JANUARY 11: Bruno Fernandes of Sporting CP celebrates after scoring a goal during the Liga NOS match between Vitoria FC and Sporting CP at Estadio do Bonfim on January 11, 2020 in Setubal, Portugal. (Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images)

Manchester United are reportedly close to the signing of Sporting Lisbon's Bruno Fernandes.

The Red Devils have been crying out for a creative spark and Fernandes could be the man to solve their midfield problems. 

We've looked at three different ways that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could fit Fernandes into the team if he moves to Old Trafford.

4-2-3-1: Fernandes as a forward

Solskjaer has stuck with a 4-2-3-1 formation throughout most of this season and Fernandes would seamlessly fit into that system.

The 25-year-old has often been deployed as an attacking midfielder for Sporting Lisbon, and he thrives in that role behind the striker. 

United have been lacking goals from midfield with Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata and Andreas Pereira scoring a combined goals total of 12 in 2018-19.

In comparison, Fernandes has delivered some outrageous numbers in Portugal on a consistent basis, scoring 32 goals in 53 appearances last season. 

Solskjaer could use a midfield two of Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba to try and ensure that Fernandes is as close to the opposition's goal as possible. 

4-3-3: Fernandes next to Pogba

While a 4-2-3-1 formation would suit Fernandes, it might not get the best out of Pogba.

The pair prefer to occupy the space between the opposition’s midfield and defence, where they can cause problems and create chances.

Therefore, United could play them both in a 4-3-3, just like Manchester City do with Kevin de Bruyne and David Silva.

This system would give Fernandes and Pogba more freedom to attack and it would make United a vastly improved side going forward.

McTominay would act as the anchor of the team in front of the back four, but Fernandes is also a willing defensive contributor. 

4-3-1-2: Fernandes behind the striker

After a difficult first year in England, Fred has been one of United's most consistent performers this season.

It would be harsh to drop the Brazilian to the bench even though Fernandes would walk straight into their starting line-up. 

Solskjaer has deployed a 4-3-1-2 formation in difficult away games and this option would give United a more balanced midfield. 

McTominay and Fred would be responsible for breaking up play while Pogba would be in his favoured position on the left of the three.

This then allows Fernandes to sit behind the two centre forwards and find pockets of space in the box.

Overall, Fernandes would prove to be a smart signing for United as the versatile midfielder can fit into a few different systems.

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