Newest Man Utd payment for Bruno Fernandes had chunk of fee hidden by Sporting

A new instalment sent to Sporting by Manchester United for Bruno Fernandes has caused confusion.

The dynamic midfielder has been a resounding success under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer since leaving his native Portugal earlier in the year, making the initial fee of £47m look more than justified.

However, the full price they need to pay is said to be in the region of £67.7m, and £2.7m of the difference was sent from Old Trafford to mainland Europe this week.

That fee has been met with confusion by the local media, who have acknowledged that only £2m was kept by Sporting with the rest going straight on agent fees and other expenses.

Portuguese outlet Correio da Manha report that the mystery payment was billed as just ‘expenses’ by the Primeira Liga leaders, but this wasn’t made clear to United.

Fernandes has scored 22 goals and laid on 13 assists across only 37 appearances for his new side in all competitions, firing them to a third place Premier League finish last season.

They currently sit ninth in the league table after three successive victories, and need a point from their final Champions League group match to progress to the knockout stages.

"We know the destiny is in our own hands," said Solskjaer after the defeat to PSG.

"We know that we play against a good team in Leipzig, who were in the semi-final last year, but we are developing into a better team as well.

"I was very pleased with the performance [against PSG] apart from of course they were more clinical.

“Big games most of the time are decided by fine margins and this time they were against us."

Fernandes is set to start when United take on West Ham in London on Saturday, before which captain Harry Maguire hailed the team spirit among his colleagues.

He told the official website: “It’s an amazing away run we’ve been on. Our home form hasn’t been good enough, like I’ve said, but our away form has been really good. We’ve shown great spirit.

“We’ve been losing in all four away matches [we have won this season], which is an incredible stat.

“It shows the spirit and the character in the group. We never give in and always fight to the end and we’ve scored some late winners.”

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