‘I will take it again without any fear or dread’: Bruno Fernandes comes out fighting over his crucial missed penalty in Man United’s defeat by Aston Villa and insists he will continue to take them, despite calls for Cristiano Ronaldo to step up
- Manchester United were awarded an injury-time penalty against Aston Villa
- Bruno Fernandes missed the opportunity to equalise late on from the spot
- He blasted the ball high into the Stretford End during United’s 1-0 loss to Villa
- He has apologised for his miss and promised fans he will ‘be ready next time’
Bruno Fernandes has apologised for his penalty miss against Aston Villa and promised fans he will ‘be ready next time’.
Manchester United were awarded an injury-time penalty after Kortney Hause handled the ball in the box during their 1-0 loss to Villa.
As a result, Fernandes – who had only missed one of his 22 penalty attempts for United when Newcastle’s Karl Darlow denied him in October last year – stepped up to take the spot-kick.
Bruno Fernandes apologised for his penalty miss and promised fans he will ‘be ready next time’
However, many believed Cristiano Ronaldo should have been the man to take the all-important penalty.
Nevertheless, Fernandes took the strike and blasted the ball high into the Stretford End.
Speaking about his failed attempt on Instagram, Fernandes said: ‘Nobody is more frustrated and disappointed than me for missing the penalty and the consequent defeat.
United were awarded an injury-time penalty after Kortney Hause handled the ball in the box
Many believed Cristiano Ronaldo (right) should have been the one to take the penalty
‘I’ve always assumed my responsibilities and I’ve always embraced them under pressure in moments like this.
‘Today, I failed. But I took a step forward and faced the challenge with the same ambition and responsibility as when, on the many other occasions, the ball ended up in the net.
‘Criticism and contrasting opinions are a big part of football. I’ve learned to live with it, even using them to drive me on, and I consider it all a very important part of my commitment to never stop trying to improve and to become the best player I can possibly be, for me and the team.
However, Fernandes (above) took the strike and blasted the ball high into the Stretford End
As a result of his failed attempt, Manchester United lost the game against Aston Villa 1-0
‘Today I once again took the responsibility given to me almost since I joined United and I will take it again without any fear or dread whenever called upon.
‘The most important thing for me is to win together and I’ll always do everything I can to help my teammates and the club to be the best we can be.
‘I’m a player who leaves everything on the pitch, with great desire and commitment. And that’s what I’ll continue to do.
‘Thank you for all your support after the final whistle! Hearing you chanting my name in the stadium was very emotional… I will come back stronger for me, because these are the standards I hold myself to, but most of all for my teammates and our fans who have always supported us.’
The captain’s Instagram post came shortly after fans had criticised him for stepping up ahead of ‘one of the greatest players who has ever lived’, Ronaldo.
Many supporters took to social media to call Fernandes out for the decision, with one writing: ‘Don’t care who you are. If you have a last minute penalty, and you have Ronaldo on the pitch, you give it to him. If he misses, he misses. But you give it to him. He’s the guy for such moments.’
Another added: ‘Apparently Ronaldo asked to take the penalty and Bruno ignored him and then Pogba tells Ronaldo to let Bruno take it. The audacity to not let Ronaldo take the penalty knowing how good he is at them. They deserved to lose.’
One fan said: ‘Imagine having Christiano Ronaldo in your team – one of the greatest players who has ever lived & a machine for scoring goals – & for him not to be taking your penalties?’
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer fumed at VAR’s decision not to overturn Aston Villa’s late winner
Kortney Hause’s strike served a heavy blow to United who had the chance to go top
Solskjaer also had a lot to say after the game. He blasted VAR’s ‘inconsistency’ and fumed at the decision not to overturn Aston Villa’s late winner.
VAR made the decision to allow Aston Villa’s goal to stand even though striker Ollie Watkins was standing close to goalkeeper David de Gea when Kortney Hause’s 88th-minute header from a corner flew in.
Speaking after the game, Solskjaer said: ‘You can see the inconsistency again, VAR and decision-making.
‘Watkins is clear standing on or touching David as the header has gone in so it’s a foul or he is offside. The linesman did his job he called it into VAR but they turned the decision down and it is a goal unfortunately, so bad decisions again.’
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