Bruno Fernandes will not change his approach as Manchester United captain because the Portuguese believes this is why Erik ten Hag appointed him to succeed Harry Maguire in the role.

Fernandes can draw criticism for his competitiveness and on-field demeanour, such as when United lost 7-0 last season at Liverpool after which he was labelled a “disgrace” by Gary Neville, who believed the 28-year-old was upset at not being substituted towards the end. While Fernandes did not actually wish to be replaced and it is understood he was furious at the Sky pundit for the claim, an overall contribution of 64 goals and 54 assists in 185 United appearances has won him widespread admiration. He is confident Ten Hag selected him as captain because of his all-round package.

“I have to be the same because that is what has brought me to be the captain at this moment and that is what the manager has decided, because he likes the way I am, the way I act and train and the way I play. So I have to keep doing the same things,” he said. “You have to improve your game day-by-day but I am happy with what I have been doing and I have to keep that standard.”

Ten Hag announced the decision during a meeting and Maguire congratulated the new captain. “He spoke in front of the whole group – he wanted to do it in front of everyone,” Fernandes said. “Everyone already knew about the situation with ‘H’ [Maguire] but no one knew who would be the next captain. So he did it in a team meeting with everyone together because it’s something we have to do more often – keep the things inside and give the compliments to ourselves.

“He [Maguire] gave me congratulations and said he is really happy for me. I understand his position is not the best at the moment. It has to be difficult for him but I am happy about that because we have always had a good relationship.”

Fernandes was asked if United can challenge for the Premier League next season. “We want to fight for titles,” he said. “We want to go for all the trophies that we are involved in. I have said that ever since I arrived at the club – even in the worst period. We want to go for everything that we are involved in and the manager has made everyone aware that this is the standards of the club, what the club deserves, what we have to set for ourselves to be a Man Utd player.”

After 12 years at United David de Gea left in the close season so the Spaniard was unable to enjoy a farewell at Old Trafford. Fernandes hopes this can be remedied. “I spoke all the time with David. We have a great relationship,” said the attacking midfielder. “He is a player that has been at the club for 12 years and it’s always better when you say goodbye to the fans in the stadium.

“He has been the biggest servant for the club in the last period so I think it would be nice for him to get that. Because he has been here in the good moments, winning the Premier League, and in some really bad moments for the club but he never left and always stayed here and give his best.”