Thomas Tuchel praised Bruno Fernandes for the ‘incredible’ impact he has had on Manchester United – and revealed how he tried to sign him for Paris Saint-Germain.
Chelsea face Fernandes on Sunday as they host Manchester United in a huge Premier League clash at Stamford Bridge.
Fernandes has established himself as one of the game’s outstanding talents since moving to Old Trafford from Sporting Lisbon in January 2020.
The Portuguese playmaker has scored 34 goals in 60 games for United and is among the first to be named Premier League Player of the Year.
It could have been so different if Tuchel had been successful, with the Chelsea boss revealing he fought hard to get Fernandes to Paris.
The German said: “In my first year in Paris I don’t know if it was the first transfer period or the second or the third, I’m not sure. It was right when we arrived in the summer.
“I got to know him in more detail thanks to my sporting director who knew him very well, so we watched more and more games about him and followed him and tried to be in contact with him to do that. arrive.
“Obviously he decided and I have never been in personal contact with him, but we tried and he turned out otherwise. Too bad for us to have to play against him.
Tuchel was made aware of Fernandes’ talents by former PSG sporting director Antero Henrique and he became determined to sign him after watching numerous images.
“With my first sports director in Paris, Antero Henrique, he knew (Fernandes) very well and we fought to have a connection with him and to bring him into our team,” explained Tuchel.
“He was a great personality for Sporting and an efficient scorer and an efficient guy to make other players more dangerous.
“The impact he has had since joining Manchester United is indescribable and incredible.
“Coming from Portugal, from a competitive team, from a great club but not from the strongest league and going in one year to one of the biggest clubs in the Premier League and the strongest league in Europe and having that kind of impact, I have the greatest respect for this guy. This is exceptional.
“He’s one of the best midfielders in the world, attacking midfielders, and he has a huge, huge impact and to have that as a single person in football you have to be absolutely top-notch because it ‘is almost impossible. “