Juan Mata, a key midfielder for the team, left, Bruno Fernandes would wear the No. 8 jersey for Manchester United the next season.
Bruno Fernandes was “very glad” to leave Manchester United this summer, according to Juan Mata’s joke, since he wanted his shirt number.
Together with Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard, Nemanja Matic, and Edinson Cavani, Mata left United at the conclusion of the month.
Juan Mata since joining Old Trafford in 2014, the 34-year-old midfielder has assisted the team in winning the FA Cup, Europa League, and EFL Cup.
The Spaniard was a very well-liked player in the locker room and provided 51 goals and 47 assists in 285 games for United.
When he announced his leaving, he was showered with congratulations from both former and current teammates, but there was another side consequence.
Since Mata’s transfer from Chelsea to United in 2014, he has always worn the No. 8 jersey.
He got it from Brazilian midfielder Anderson, who had previously shared it with Wayne Rooney, Nicky Butt, and Paul Ince.
Since moving to Sporting Lisbon in January 2020, Fernandes has had his eye on it, and he finally has his preferred number.
The 2022–23 season will see the Portuguese midfielder switch from his previous two seasons’ No. 18 jersey to one that matches a tattoo on his right forearm.
The United players’ changing of the jersey numbers led to some friendly teasing, with David de Gea tweeting to his countryman to see if he had “anything to say” regarding Fernandes’ excitement at earning the number 8.
He told me he was upset the day he realized we wouldn’t be playing together anymore,
but I think he was very pleased @B Fernandes8 #Number8, tweeted Mata in response with a quote-tweet, complete with a sobbing laughing face, a long nose emoji, and a shrug.
Fernandes, who was born on September 8 in 1994, has previously played for Udinese and Sporting Lisbon and dons No. 8 for Portugal.
He signed a rich four-year contract in April, so he will be staying with United for a while.
Another adjustment is that Chris Smalling’s former number, 12, has been given to Tyrell Malacia, a new player for United.
During United’s preseason trip of Thailand and Singapore, Fernandes and Malacia will get the opportunity to wear their new jersey numbers for the first time.
Born on September 8, 1994, Fernandes wears No. 8 for Portugal and has previously played for Sporting Lisbon and Udinese.
He committed to a lucrative four-year deal in April, so he will be a United player for some time.
Another change is that Tyrell Malacia, a new player for United, now gets Chris Smalling’s old number, 12, instead of Smalling.
Fernandes and Malacia will get the chance to don their new jersey numbers for the first time while United is on its preseason tour of Thailand and Singapore.