Bruno Fernandes is being accused of an embarrassing dive in Manchester United’s Europa League final defeat to Villarreal.
Man United drew 1-1 with the Spanish side but lost in an extraordinary penalty shootout, involving all 22 players. Fernandes converted his spot-kick but otherwise had a night to forget as he struggled to have an impact against a tenacious Villarreal side.
One moment that sparked anger and criticism online, however, was when the Portuguese playmaker appeared to dive while turning to escape Etienne Capoue.
Fernandes was twisting away with the ball when Capoue leapt towards him, but thought better of putting in a challenge.
Man United’s captain on the night, however, fell to the pitch with his face twisted in anguish, despite any contact at all being very minimal.
“What I don’t get is that he’s away from his man there with a neat turn and still feels the need to go down with barely any contact,” said one football fan on Twitter. “He’s an absolute disgrace. Just embarrassing,” commented another.
Along with several of his teammates, Bruno looked understandably distraught after the penalty shootout drama finally ended with Villarreal keeper Geronimo Rulli scoring past David de Gea, then saving the spot-kick of his opposite number.
It’s clear the 26-year-old, who scored 28 goals for Manchester United last season, was desperate to win the final for his club. But did that lead him into a desperate and humiliating dive? Or was there more contact than it appears?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments.