Many a scouse eyebrow would have gone upwards after reading the Thursday morning gossip columns, with Manchester City’s Fernando linked to a Liverpool switch.
The Sun newspaper make the bold claim that Jurgen Klopp has earmarked the Brazilian-born anchorman to become part of his summer Anfield overhaul, just as Pep Guardiola embarks upon his own Etihad shakeup.
That Fernando is an expected casualty of Guardiola’s potential clear out pretty much sums up the former Porto midfielder’s underwhelming impression on the Premier League since arriving for £12m in the summer of 2014.
As the holding midfield role often determines, Fernando is not a flashy operator by any stretch of the imagination, but neither has he performed his duties with any particular distinction.
When you check out his stats compared to a benchmark in the department like Leicester’s N’Golo Kante, his contribution at City pales into significance.
According to whoscored.com Fernando makes only half the amount of tackles per league game, and virtually a quarter of the interceptions his French counterpart seizes upon in a match.
The speculation is also curious given the relative strength Liverpool already possess in that area of the pitch, where any of Emre Can, Lucas or latterly Jordan Henderson operates, while James Milner and Joe Allen are also capable of filling in.
It’s certainly questionable whether Fernando offers more than any of the first three, especially Lucas, whose tackles per game ratio, albeit bumped up by some recent displays at centre-back, even trumps that of Kante.
The same newspaper also state that Porto are willing to take their former charge back from City for £10m this summer.
Liverpool fans will be probably be hoping they get their wish.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.