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Bruno Fernandes sends warning to Manchester United team-mates after win over Real Sociedad


Bruno Fernandes completed a brace as Manchester United beat Real Sociedad in Turin (Picture: Getty)

Bruno Fernandes warned his Manchester United team-mates their Europa League last-32 tie with Real Sociedad was still very much alive despite them running out 4-0 winners in the first leg and said the squad have some ‘growing up’ to do after some poor recent results.

The Portugal midfielder was once again in inspired form and gave the Red Devils a healthy lead with a pair of well-taken goals either side of half-time in Turin on Thursday evening.

Marcus Rashford finished off a flowing counter-attacking move in the 64th minute and Daniel James squeezed the ball home from a tight angle to give Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side a four-goal advantage at the death.

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The comprehensive victory makes the return leg at Old Trafford look a formality but Fernandes expects a ‘tough game’ on home soil next week and told BT Sport the tie was far from over.

Asked what pleased him about the match, Fernandes said: ‘The result, of course. It’s about winning, we want to win games and today we did.

‘I think everything is well, the result is on our side but we have the second leg and still we have a tough game to do again in our home and win again to go through.

‘We know 4-0 is a good result but we have to be aware of what Real Sociedad can do and be ready for the second leg.’

An inspired Fernandes scored his 20th and 21st goals of the season (Picture: Getty)

United had won just two of their previous six games heading into the match and Fernandes insisted there was still major room for improvement.

‘I think we don’t have to look to the results. I have to look at the performance,’ he added.

‘We know we don’t perform well in some games. But still in some games we don’t get the result we want and we perform well.

‘So we need to understand we have to grow up, we have to get better and better.

‘And of course, the most important thing is the results and it gives you more confidence to go to the next games and try to win again.’

James made it four in the dying moments of the game (Picture: Getty)

Though Fernandes seemed to hesitate after a knock from Sociedad goalkeeper Alex Remiro for his opener, he claimed he was just holding out for the ‘right moment’ to strike the ball.

‘No, I was just waiting for the right moment for the ball to come down and wait for the right moment to kick,’ he explained.

‘If you rush sometimes in that moment, you can take a wrong shot and the ball goes out.

‘So I just waited for the right time to kick it.’

Fernandes joked he gifted James an assist with his second goal after the Welshman appeared to miscontrol the ball in the build-up.

‘I was expecting the touch from Dan James for me,’ he continued.

‘But when he controls the ball – I think it was a control, I give him an assist! [laughs] – but I saw the ball close for me and I think on that occasion, the ‘keeper is coming out, if you kick well on the first touch it’s difficult to react.

‘Luckily for me, it was a goal.’

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