Bruno Fernandes has joked that Daniel James did not mean to assist his second goal in Manchester United’s 4-0 win over Real Sociedad in the first leg of their Europa League knockout tie.
Fernandes was central to United’s success, netting a brace, and goals on the counter from Marcus Rashford and James rounded off an impressive win for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.
Speaking after the game about his two goals, Fernandes joked that James’ assist for his second strike came from a poor first touch, telling BT Sport : “I was expecting the touch from Dan James to me.
“When he controlled the ball, I think he was trying to control it, but I’ll give him an assist.
“I saw the ball close to me and I think on these occasions the keeper is coming out, if you kick it well on the first touch it’s difficult to react and luckily for me it was a goal.”
However, James has claimed it was intentional, telling MUTV: “I always knew I was onside, when I heard it was Bruno being checked I knew he was behind me so I knew it was going to be a goal. I was just thinking about the assist, I meant to touch it to him.”
Reflecting on the victory, Fernandes added: “The result of course [is pleasing], it’s about winning, we want to win the games. We did everything well. The result is on our side but we still have the second leg and a tough game to do again at home.
“We know 4-0 is a good result, but we have to be aware of what Sociedad can do and be ready for the second leg. We don’t have to look at the results, we have to look at the performance.
“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. We need to understand that we have to grow up, we have to get better and better.
“Of course the most important is the results that give you a bit of confidence to go into the next game and try to win again. My target is to score the most goals I can and assist my team-mates to score to.
“The position I play is to do that, assist and score when you can. The most important target is the trophies. Trophies will be more important than scoring goals.”