United remain in negotiations with Sporting over the 25-year-old, though are yet to reach an agreement on a fee with less than four days remaining before Friday’s deadline.
Solskjaer faces the very real possibility of ending the window with no new recruits, despite a squad with gaping holes and a need for reinforcements both up front and midfield.
And the United manager had no transfer developments to report – on Fernandes or otherwise – ahead of Wednesday’s Carabao Cup semi-final against Manchester City.
“I haven’t got any updates for you on transfers,” he said. “I think it was a waste [of a question], I gave you the option [of not asking it]. I haven’t got anything to say now, my mind is on the game.
“We’ve got players here we’re working hard to get back and if there is something out there the club is pursuing that and it’s difficult.
“I can’t remember how many good ones we’ve brought in and good deals in January.
“Henrik [Larsson] was good. Nemanja [Matic] and Patrice [Evra]. I’m talking about it’s hard, very hard. The clubs don’t want to lose their best players.”