Manchester United dropped points yet again and their dreams of finishing in a Champions League spot are diminishing while Bruno Fernandes had another poor performance at Old Trafford.
Ralf Rangnick might be best leaving Bruno Fernandes on the sidelines for a spell as his form continues to plummet.
While the playmaker is not entirely to blame for Manchester United’s problems, he is contributing to the negativity right now.
The Red Devils struggled against Southampton in very similar circumstances to their 1-1 draw against Burnley just days before.
United went ahead early in the match but many had left their heads in the dressing room after their opponents bit back within minutes on both occasions.
Che Adams scored three minutes after the break for Southampton while Burnley struck via Jay Rodriguez, who netted within two.
And the Old Trafford outfit might still be sitting fifth in the Premier League but their position might drop as low as eighth.
Arsenal, Tottenham and Wolves are all lower than United but have games in hand that could see them shoot above them.
For Rangnick, it is time to make tough decisions – and one includes dropping Fernandes.
The German coach has the advantage of only being in charge until the end of the season, meaning his sole focus must be getting United into the top four.
And that means making the calls that no one else wants to do while leaving Fernandes out would be an outrageous claim to make just 12 months ago.
Not anymore, though, and the Portugal international has been out of sorts for quite some time now.
Apart from a brace against Aston Villa, the former Sporting Lisbon star has not scored in the Premier League since 2 December.
Against Southampton, the 27-year-old appeared to have no positional awareness and was just floating around while his impact on Fraser Forster’s goal was minimal.
Despite their relationship with the national side, Fernandes also does not appear to be on the same wavelength as Cristiano Ronaldo – a huge problem considering the vast talent both clearly have.
But it is time for someone like Jesse Lingard to come in and play as a No. 10 – the Englishman has been unfairly treated at Old Trafford after being promised he would be utilised more by both Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Rangnick.
That has simply failed to happen while it is time for the United coach to stick to his word and hand the playmaker a chance to shine.
As for Fernandes, he is simply too good to be out of form for much longer but now is the time to take a moment to reset – for the good of United.
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