Granada defender Yan Brice was penalised for shoving Fernandes in the face as they anticipated a cross and Fernandes stepped up to score his 24th goal of the season in the 90th minute.
United legend Paul Scholes was on punditry duty for the quarter-final first leg and felt Fernandes was fortunate to win United’s 15th penalty of the campaign.
Solskjaer admitted he hadn’t seen the incident or a replay but was informed by the United assistant manager Mike Phelan that Fernandes had been struck in the face.
“To be honest, I haven’t seen it, just seen his eye when he came on, he got hit,” Solskjaer said. “MIck Phelan was sat behind me in the dugout and he said he took one in the face, so it’s a clear penalty.
Fernandes now has 24 goals for United this term and is five shy of registering the most in a season by a United player since Robin van Persie’s 30-goal haul in 2012-13.
The Portuguese has struggled for form of late and is without a goal from open play since February 14 but Solskjaer is pleased with Fernandes’s character.
“He drives the team, he drives himself, he’s got such enthusiasm, hunger to win and do well. I played in teams with a lot stronger personalities than [Fernandes], to be honest, and that’s the way for us to improve and to go to the next level and demand more and more.”