Manchester United's €55 million (£49m/$61m) January signing Bruno Fernandes is doing what Paul Pogba "should have done in terms of leadership on the pitch", according to Emmanuel Petit, who is eager to see the two men play together at Old Trafford.
Fernandes has inspired an impressive turnaround in fortunes for United since arriving from Sporting in the January transfer window, making a seamless transition from the Primeira Liga to the Premier League.
The Portuguese playmaker has contributed three goals and four assists in his first nine outings across all competitions, helping the Red Devils get their 2019-20 campaign back on track.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men were in danger of slipping out of the race for Champions League qualification at the turn of the year, but now find themselves just three points adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea after picking up 10 points from a possible 12 in their last four top-flight games.
United are also unbeaten in 11, and they have only conceded twice during that period, with Europa League and FA Cup silverware also still up for grabs heading into the business end of the campaign.
Pogba has had to watch on from the sidelines for the majority of the 2019-20 season through injury, amid reports he will seek a move away from the club when the transfer market reopens this summer.
The World Cup winner has failed to live up to his £89 million ($111m) price tag since returning to the Theatre of Dreams from Juventus in 2016, and Petit believes Fernandes is already fulfilling the role his fellow Frenchman has struggled with over the last four years.
However, despite Pogba's recent troubles, the ex-Les Bleus and Arsenal midfielder would still like to see the pair link up for United in the near future, as he told the Mirror: "Fernandes has made a huge impact.
"In the space of two months, he is the best buy in the winter market. He has made such a big impact. It's like he's been at the club for six years.
"He's changed the mentality inside the dressing room. It's hard for a player to come in mid-season and do that.
"Paul Pogba was meant to be doing this at Manchester United. It's what he should have done in terms of leadership on the pitch.
"But I'm looking forward to seeing them together on the pitch, I want to see if that can work, and I'm pretty sure it can work."