Bruno Fernandes issued a grovelling apology to Sporting Lisbon fans after captaining the team in their 5-0 Portuguese Super Cup Final thrashing by fierce rivals Benfica.
Fernandes has been strongly linked with a summer move to the Premier League before Thursday’s deadline, with Tottenham and Manchester United believed to be leading the race to land the star.
And, in what looks set to be his final game for Sporting, goals from Rafa Silva, Alejandro Grimaldo and Chiquinho, plus a Pizzi brace, sealed an emphatic victory for Benfica om Sunday.
The Portugal international was emotional on the pitch at full-time and has now reacted to the heavy defeat by issuing a statement.
Writing on Instagram, he said: “This is not a time for many words, it is not a time to raise our heads.
“It is a time to bow our heads and think about the mistakes we have made and that we should never make them again.
“It is the moment to think about what made us win, cups we won last year and that the unity and fellowship we had led us to these achievements!”
Fernandes met with club bosses alongside his agent on Friday, where he reportedly communicated his desire to leave and was told he can go if their valuation of around €70m is met.