• Bruno Fernandes raves about Cristiano Ronaldo
  • Fernandes recalls Manchester United's historic Champions League final win in 2008
  • Fernandes sign with Manchester United in January

Manchester United's newly-signed midfielder Bruno Fernandes paid tribute to Cristiano Ronaldo as he went into raptures about the soccer legend’s legacy playing for the English football club. Signed by the Red Devils in January, the 25-year-old raved about his fellow Portuguese, recalling his iconic performance during the 2008 UEFA Champions League final.

Fernandes, whose decision to join United was influenced by Ronaldo’s success in Old Trafford, still vividly remembers the club’s nail-biting stretch 12 years ago against Chelsea, which for him is the most remarkable moment in team history.

“I think from history I have maybe one game – the Champions League final (2008) when Cristiano (Ronaldo) scores with the header,” Fernandes said in an interview for United’s official site, as reported by Metro UK.

“After this, he misses a penalty, I think it’s the same one right, against Chelsea. This one. I think it was a great final and for Cristiano, it was one of the best games yet. Because he scored an amazing goal with a header. He doesn’t jump, he flies,” the young footballer recalled.

“After this, he missed the penalty but in the end, United won the Champions League and in the end we see him crying on the ground because he won the Champions League. It was one of the most important games in the history of Manchester United.”

The historic match, which was held in front of about a 67,000-strong crowd at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, ended in a 6-5 penalty shootout win for Ronaldo and Man United.

Finding himself running field of the Theatre of Dreams this time, Fernandes looks to emulate the same impact that Ronaldo delivered to the club – and it appears he is off to a promising start.

In just a few games after his transfer from Sporting Lisbon to United, Fernandes has amassed two goals already, with his first coming from the club’s 3-0 win over Watford in February. And for some reason, the 5’10 footballer is regarding that game – or goal, for that matter - as a special moment in his young career with the Red Devils.

“The game I would like to watch would be the game where I scored my first goal, against Watford, because I want to feel – not exactly how I would feel in the game – but I can feel the game,” said Fernandes. “I can feel the atmosphere and everything when I score. I can have the motivation to keep training and keep the focus on the return of the game.”

Since Fernandes’ transfer, Man Und has posted three wins in five games, which also included three assists from the Portuguese stalwart.

Cristiano Ronaldo has scored 15 goals in 10 league games.
Cristiano Ronaldo AFP / MARCO BERTORELLO