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Red-hot Bruno Fernandes reveals why he gave Rashford a penalty opportunity in the Champions League

Last updated 1 month ago | By Waweru Titus

Football - Champions League - Group H - Manchester United v Istanbul Basaksehir - Old Trafford, Manchester, Britain - November 24, 2020. Manchester United's Bruno Fernandes celebrates scoring their second goal with teammates. [REUTERS/Toby Melville]

Manchester United midfielder Bruno Fernandes has revealed why he gave Marcus Rashford a penalty during their massive 4-1 win against Istanbul Basaksehir in the Champions League on Tuesday.

Fernandes, who is Man United’s designated penalty taker, scored twice in the first 19 minutes – the first a half-volley – and looked to have a golden chance to add a third just past the half-hour mark when Boli Bolingoli fouled Rashford in the area.

The in-form midfielder initially held the ball but then turned to Rashford, who duly slotted in his fifth UCL goal of the season.

"Of course, every player wants a hat-trick, but after the game in the Premier League [against West Brom on Saturday] I told Rashford that he could take the next one.

"So, I remembered that and also he's one of the top scorers in the Champions League, so I think it will be important for him to keep going there and taking that confidence.

"But as I say, it doesn't matter who takes the penalty as long as the team scores. When the team scores, I score too,” Fernandes told BT Sport after the match.

Manchester United's Marcus Rashford goes down after a challenge from Istanbul Basaksehir's Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo resulting in a penalty. [REUTERS/Toby Melville]

United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had no problem with Fernandes' decision to delegate, acknowledging United do have numerous players who are confident from the spot.

"Marcus is a very good penalty taker and Bruno is very confident. Bruno wants to give it to Marcus then why not?

"Anthony Martial took one against Leipzig too - why not share it around?" Solskjaer asked.

The Red Devils’ win was crucial as they had suffered a shock 2-1 defeat in Turkey prior to the international break that provided Group H rivals RB Leipzig and Paris Saint-Germain with encouragement, but Solskjaer's men bounced back at “The Theatre of Dreams”.

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