‘The best players show up on big occasions’ – Keane punches Fernandes after Man City defeat

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The Portugal midfielder failed to inspire his teammates as goals from Stones and Fernandinho consigned the hosts to defeat

Manchester United star Bruno Fernandes found himself in Roy Keane’s line of fire after losing 2-0 to Manchester City on Wednesday.

The Reds’ hopes for the Carabao Cup were extinguished in the semi-final, as the champions proved too strong at Old Trafford.

John Stones gave the visitors the lead five minutes after the halftime restart, before Fernandinho left the result out of the question in the final stages to keep Pep Guardiola’s men on track for a fourth consecutive success at the competition.

Former United captain Keane was unhappy with what he saw at the club and harshly criticized Fernandes as United lost the opportunity to seek their first silver medal with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

“It is not easy, it is not easy to win football trophies,” Keane declared in Sky sports, while comparing the Portuguese midfielder unfavorably to a Reds idol.

“Fernandes has had high praise and for the last month people have been comparing him to people like Eric Cantona, etcetera. But Cantona [won trophies].

“Fernandes didn’t really do much tonight. The best players show up on the big occasions, and that’s what Cantona used to do to get the trophies. And that’s where this team is a little short.

“They’ll probably need one or two more players to get into the team, no doubt, and the mentality they need, maybe the confidence to win this semi-final to get over the line and then build momentum. And they just didn’t have it tonight.

“But the credit goes to City. United took on a prominent Manchester City team tonight who showed up and put on a good show.”

Despite Wednesday’s setback, Keane still sees plenty of positives at Old Trafford, with Solskjaer’s charges tied for the top of the Premier League alongside Liverpool having played one game less than their major rivals.

“The next game is always the most important. Against Watford [in the FA Cup], Championship team, United will undoubtedly rotate and give rest to some players, “he added.

“And then Burnley will certainly not be an easy game for them, but you can’t take your eyes off the Liverpool game. If United win at Burnley and then win at Liverpool, they could be six points ahead of Liverpool.”

“It’s strange when you think back to the start of the season United had, so United, Ole and the players have to stay positive and look forward to the next matches.”

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