Bruno Fernandes wishes this his international teammates were doing a 'little bit worse' at Manchester City.
City are on a 21-game winning streak and could go a massive 17 points clear at the top of the Premier League table if they defeat neighbours Manchester United on Sunday.
Fernandes' fellow Portuguese Ruben Dias, Joao Cancelo and Bernardo Silva are all enjoying fantastic campaigns and have played a major role in the Blues' incredible run.
While the trio, as well as Fernandes, stand Portugal in good stead ahead of this summer's rearranged European Championships, the United talisman has joked that he'd rather they not be doing so well at club level.
Fernandes has discussed his relationship with the City contingent ahead of the derby and has insisted that they won't be friends on the pitch.
“I speak with them regularly, we have a good relationship," he told United's official site. "But the relationships stay out of the game. They know me and they know that on the pitch we are not friends anymore!
"At the same time I enjoy seeing them play and every one of them is doing well individually and I’m happy for them. As a team I was hoping to see them do a little bit worse than they are doing, but individually I am happy for them because they are good people and they deserve to be in the positions they are and playing in the way they are playing.”
United will have to arrest their own slump in form if they are to get anything out of the game and Fernandes has also explained what it will take for United to stop their cross-town rivals.
Manchester United were held to a 0-0 draw by Crystal Palace on Wednesday night.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his players were frustrated for the third goalless game in succession, dropping more points to allow Man City to streak away at the Premier League's summit, on a poor day for the forwards.
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“We know it’s always difficult to play against City; we have to do everything good, almost perfection I think," he explained.
"The idea of the football they play is easy to understand but it’s difficult to play against. Everyone understands the way they play, they want to have the ball, they want to put pressure on and when they lose it they try to win it straight away.
"Everyone knows that, but it’s difficult to play against and difficult to win the ball and have some possession for a long time against them. But I think we have to understand what we can do against that type of game and what we can do better to win the game.
"We all know it’s difficult for us, but it will be difficult them in the same way.”